The Philadelphia Eagles won’t have a quarterback battle in their game with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Aug. 24. Now that the Eagles have ended the great Michael Vick vs Nick Foles debate, Vick can play the entire first half of the third preseason game like any other starter. However, this also means that he and Chip Kelly really have something to prove now.
With the Eagles officially committing to Vick, the time has now come to prove Kelly made the right call. While he doesn’t have to compare himself to Foles against the Jaguars, Vick does have to keep up the good work for a longer period of time.
Although Vick only has two incomplete passes in his first two preseason games, the Eagles only sent him out for a handful of series each time. That won’t be the case in Jacksonville, as Philadelphia will finally see how Vick does in Kelly’s system for a whole half. Then over two weeks later, the Eagles will finally see how Vick does in Kelly’s system for 60 minutes.
Can Vick stay accurate, upright and smart for more than a few series every game? That question will define the entire Eagles season, as it did in 2011 and 2012. When the answer was no, it destroyed Andy Reid’s career in Philadelphia, and now it could put Kelly’s career in a deep early hole if things go wrong.
The Eagles won’t really know what they have in Kelly and Vick until their Monday night opener against the Washington Redskins on Sept. 9. However, the first half against the Jaguars will be the first true, extended sign of what Philadelphia is in for with them.
Given that Foles barely had any incompletions in the last two weeks as well -- although he had a few more turnovers -- perhaps Kelly’s attack can work for any quarterback and make this debate irrelevant. Yet he and the Eagles still chose Vick to be the primary leader, based on only a few series over two weeks. But the third week will be the real kickoff to this last grand experiment with him.