After Philadelphia Eagles QB Michael Vick left last week’s game with an injured hamstring and Nick Foles came in to lead the team to victory, it immediately sparked talk of a quarterback controversy.
Chip Kelly initially squashed any such notion by saying that Vick is still the team’s starting QB after the game last Sunday. However, on Monday he seemed to change his tune a little bit when he was asked if Foles could win the job by his performance:
If he plays well? Yeah, there’s always open competition. So if Nick goes out there and throws 100 for 100 and throws 27 touchdown passes, then, yeah.
There’s some obvious sarcasm there, which might make you think he was making fun of such an apparently absurd question. But, his answer to the next question, which was would Vick be back regardless if he misses a week, was a little more serious:
That’s not the case for anybody. If someone comes in and puts on an unbelievable performance, you have to take it all into account. That’s my point.
*Quotes courtesy of the Eagles’ press release
This, of course, led to a firestorm of speculation and talk about a QB controversy. Vick vs. Foles talk filled the air waves, web sites and message boards.
Does Foles have a realistic chance of unseating Vick at this stage of the season? Does he really have to play like Joe Montana on steroids to win the job this week or is “pretty good” enough?
In any case, I’m not here to start talking about who should start and who shouldn’t. The most likely scenario has Vick sitting this week and then returning against Dallas in Week 7.
What I merely wanted to do here is point out what I consider the obvious…
If there is actual talk and actual thoughts that your backup QB could possibly unseat your starter after playing just over one-half of football, it means that your QB situation in general is not good.
In cities that have a true starting QB, there is never any such talk or debate.
I’m not talking about the cities where guys like Drew Brees, Tom Brady or Peyton Manning play, they are the obvious. But what about places like Chicago, Dallas, Carolina, St. Louis or San Diego?
None of those quarterbacks have ever led their team to a championship and have suffered their fair share of losing, yet you never hear of QB controversies there. That’s because, win or lose, they are “the man” at QB for their respective teams, without question.
Those teams all have their problems, but their problems are predominantly non-QB related and there isn’t much talk, if any, about replacing the starter.
It seems there are very few time periods where Vick is the unquestioned starter around here. And not coincidentally, the Eagles have not done well.
In the majority, if not all, of the cases where there is either a QB controversy or at least questions surrounding the QB position, the team is losing and doesn’t have much hope for the future.
Point blank, it’s never a good when you even entertain the notion of your backup QB being better than the starter. That situation is almost always about picking the lesser of the two evils more-so than having two great talents and you just can’t decide who to go with.
We can all sit here and debate about Vick, Foles and maybe even Barkley, but that’s because they are our only options. Vick and Foles have their strengths and weaknesses, but the question is if you believe either is good enough to ever lead this team to a championship.
I think our next franchise QB is not on the team yet. Matt Barkley might have something to say about that, but at this point, this team needs to seriously think about doing whatever it takes to land a blue-chip QB prospect in the talent-laden 2014 draft.
The biggest problem the Eagles have is that Vick and Foles are good enough to lead this team to a mediocre season and maybe even squeak into the playoffs thanks to a crappy division.
Unfortunately, the more they win, the further away we get from getting that blue-chipper.
I’m not trying to say the Eagles should tank the season nor am I trying to be a negative-Nancy here. I’m just trying to see the bigger picture, and that picture needs to include a future franchise quarterback.
This team needs someone to become the unquestioned starter at QB and help create another “era” in Philly along with Kelly. Nothing is worse than year-after-year of questions surrounding your quarterback position.
If we base the 2014 draft off of perceived team needs at this point, every draft pick should go towards rebuilding the defense. However, the quarterback position supersedes every other position on a football team by leaps and bounds.
Whatever Chip Kelly and Howie Roseman have to do to get a big-time QB in here again, that’s what they have to do.
I just hope they realize that or we could be in for another long stretch of mediocrity like we saw in between the Randall Cunningham and Donovan McNabb eras.
Or hell, maybe we have the solution right here: