Chip Kelly: Eagles will have 'open competition' with Vick, Foles
Chip Kelly said that the Eagles will have an "open competition" between Michael Vick and Nick Foles heading into 2013.
Earlier Monday the Eagles played the role of Buzz Killington for free-agent rumors by locking up Michael Vick on a restructured, one-year deal that will keep him from hitting the free-agent market this offseason.
But despite bringing Vick back looking like an obvious sign he'll start, Chip Kelly stressed at his press conference on Monday afternoon that the Eagles will have an "open competition" at quarterback.
"There's an open competition," Kelly said. "Michael knows that. Nick knows that. Nick knew every step of the way what we're doing. I wanted to make sure Nick was included in the plans. I think both have outstanding qualities in terms of being quarterbacks in this league. I also know in this league you better have two. Who the starting quarterback is to start the season off is going to be won on the practice field."
That's a pretty salient point re: "better have two" from Kelly. And it's also why we shouldn't expect them to stand pat at quarterback this offseason. Having a trio of Vick, Foles and Dennis Dixon could give Kelly some upside in terms of two different styles of quarterbacks and then a safety valve in terms of Dixon as a guy who he's worked with before.
Having proclaimed all these nice things about both Vick and Foles, though, Kelly wouldn't say that either was one was off the trading block or completely safe from being released.
"We're not ruling out anything right now," Kelly said when asked specifically about moving Vick or Foles. "Our job and we know from Day One is to put the best team on the field when we open up the season on September 13 or whenever we open up the season. I don't rule anything out and I don't rule anything in. I know moving forward we as an organization had to make a decision on what we wanted to do with Michael and we wanted Michael on this team."
Vick echoed a similar statement when asked about his return to the Eagles, calling it the "perfect situation."
"I feel like this is the perfect situation for me," Vick said on Monday. "After talking with Chip and looking at the offense, I wanted to be here."
There will be much hand-wringing when it comes to Vick's success with Kelly. Vick doesn't get the ball out quickly and he's typically been more of a playground runner than a designed runner. There will be concerns about his safety.
But it's quite possible that designed runs, should Vick learn to read plays and run the offense properly, will keep Vick more healthy.
Kelly's a smart enough offensive mind to make Vick successful in this league again. But there's also plenty of bust potential with the re-marriaging of Vick and the Eagles. Regardless, it's going to be one of the top storylines to watch around the NFL, once again.
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