Vick Says He’s Done With QB Battles

Michael Vick and Nick Foles
Michael Vick
is not only eyeing a starting gig in 2014, he intends to land a job without having to fight for it.

Speaking with Mike Missanelli on 97.5 The Fanatic Thursday, Vick made it clear that he doesn’t want to go through another drawn-out quarterback competition like the one he experienced last summer with the Eagles.

“You can put me in all the quarterback battles you want to put me in, I just don’t think I would lose one,” he said. “Not saying that out of arrogance, just saying it with confidence because I know what it takes to win. I’ve been playing in this league for 11 years, and the one thing I won’t do, I won’t go to any other place and battle for a position. Why would I do that?” Read more »

Foles: I’m Not Afraid To Throw an INT

NFL: Chicago Bears at Philadelphia Eagles

At one point this season, Nick Foles had thrown 19 touchdowns and zero interceptions.

Considering the ridiculousness of those numbers, some will naturally wonder whether he was overly conservative.

“I’m not afraid to throw an interception,” Foles said during an interview with ESPN’s Mike & Mike at the Super Bowl. “I know that it’s gonna happen. I know that guys are gonna look at me, look to me when I do it, and they’re gonna see how I react. And I want to sling the ball around. I want to throw it around. So if I do happen to make a mistake, the guys know I’m still gonna be slinging it their way and they’re gonna make plays.” Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Barkley And the Chin Strap

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Chip Kelly regularly held quarterback competitions during his time at Oregon. He did the same in his first year on the job in Philadelphia. Kelly was asked if  that process is no longer needed considering Nick Foles established himself with a monster 2013 season.

“No, there’s always competition, and I think you can ask Nick that, too,” said Kelly.  “I think everybody kind of feeds off of that, and they understand that.  And then if you also have a guy that’s not competing to be the starter with Nick, then what if Nick gets hurt and then all of a sudden the other guy goes, ‘Oh, my God, I’m not ready to play because I thought Nick was going to be the guy.’  It’s a cliché, but you are a chin strap away from playing in this league and when your opportunity comes, you have to take advantage of that.”

A chin strap away. That’s one of the more frequently-used Chipisms, as Kelly often talks about the need to have two good quarterbacks on your roster in the NFL. One of the significant questions facing the Eagles this offseason is whether Matt Barkley can be the man to push Foles in camp, and step in capably if the situation arises. Read more »

Three Eagles Numbers That Matter

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You know the drill. Here are three Eagles numbers that matter.

4 – The number of “close” interceptions by Nick Foles in 2013, as charted by Scott Kacsmar of Football Outsiders (via ESPN Insider). We know that Foles only threw two interceptions in 317 pass attempts during the regular season for a ridiculously low rate of 0.6 percent. But a fair question is: How much of that was luck, and how much of that was good decision-making?

Per Kascmar’s research, Foles didn’t need a lot of luck in this category. He charted zero dropped interceptions by opponents. The four close INTs included: one that DeSean Jackson broke up against the Cardinals; one that was negated by a questionable holding penalty against Arizona; and one against Green Bay where two defenders ran into each other. Read more »

Foles Wins Pro Bowl MVP

NFL: Pro Bowl

With the game tied at 14 in the fourth quarter, Deion Sanders thought about pulling Nick Foles from the Pro Bowl.

“Offensively, I know drafting young quarterbacks it was gonna be a dilemma,” Sanders said during a TV interview on NBC. “But I know I have [Andrew] Luck. And he’s with his scheme. So if we have to go back to Luck, we gotta go back to Luck.”

Ultimately, Sanders decided to stick with Foles, and the Eagles’ signal-caller rewarded him by engineering a five-play, 57-yard drive to give his team the lead. Foles delivered a beautiful ball to Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown down the right sideline for 39 yards. He then found Browns tight end Jordan Cameron for a 12-yard TD. Read more »

Super Bowl Facts: You Know What They Say About Quarterbacks With Big Hands…

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Quick: What body part’s size is most vital to a pro quarterback’s success?

Um, gee. I dunno. Height, maybe?

Uh-uh. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is just five-foot-11, and he’s playing in the Super Bowl this Sunday. Try again.

Hmm. Could it be … head circumference? Quarterbacks have to be smart, right?

You must be kidding me. Ever hear of Donovan McNabb? Okay, let me help. Here’s a quote from former Seahawks quarterback Jim Zorn that appeared in Friday’s Wall Street Journal. You fill in the blank:

“Russell Wilson’s _______ are a God thing — something you couldn’t even design.”

Er. Do cojones count? Read more »

Weekend Reading: Foles, Senior Bowl Studs

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A few links to pass along to get you through the weekend.

Tedy Bruschi unveiled his second annual  “All-Bruschi Team,” which recognizes some of the less-heralded players that are “flag carriers you need in order to win games.” Nick Foles is his quarterback.

Foles was the most efficient quarterback in the NFL this year. He led the league in passer rating and passing yards per attempt, and he threw only two interceptions. This is no dink-and-dunk quarterback; he will take you deep and make you pay. Foles led the Eagles to the NFC East title despite entering the year knowing Michael Vick was the starter. Once Vick went down, Foles stepped in and didn’t look back. The Eagles might have found their franchise quarterback.

Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Too Soon To Elevate Foles

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One of the great things about the NFL is how one week, one series, one pass can alter perception.

How many times have you gone into a Sunday feeling one way about a team or player, only to walk away with a fresh perspective? Sometimes, that happens even if the team or player in question isn’t part of the proceedings. Take Nick Foles, for instance.

Even though he hasn’t played  since January 4th, the conversation around Foles continues to evolve as the playoffs unfold. He is being compared to Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson — in many circles, favorably. An argument I have heard several times since the NFC Championship Game is that Kaepernick and Wilson are beneficiaries of a strong supporting cast, and that Foles would be as successful (maybe more successful) if he was backed by the type of nasty defense that the Niners and Seahawks enjoy. Kaepernick’s three turnovers on San Francisco’s final three drives in the NFC Championship game are helping to fuel this conversation.

It’s a dangerous leap to make. Read more »

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