In April's draft, the Philadelphia Eagles surprised everyone by taking Matt Barkley with the 98th overall selection, despite already having the services of both Michael Vick and Nick Foles. The move made some waves, although it was assumed at that point that Vick was the quarterback to beat in Philadelphia.
Now, with a starting quarterback still not named, it seems like less of a sure bet that Michael Vick will win the starting job.
"I’m not here to be a backup," Nick Foles told reporters yesterday, via PhillyMag.com. "I’m here to be the guy. I don’t think we play this game to sit on the bench. We play it to play, and I’m here to play."
"Your mindset has to be that you’re in the race to start," Matt Barkley said, via CSNPhilly.com. "You’ve got to have that mindset. I’m in a competition regardless of what everyone else is saying. You just have to practice that way, of always trying to compete. I couldn’t care less about what people are talking about. I don’t listen to that. . . . I feel like I’m part of that race, whether people are saying that or not."
Both Foles and Barkley are confident they can compete, and if they play to the level of Vick in preseason action, is it possible we could see Vick cut by the Eagles?
According to Rotoworld, Michael Vick is set to make $4 million in salary and roster bonuses, far more than any team in the league would be willing to pay a third string quarterback and more than most would pay even for the best of second team quarterbacks.
The way it seems to be unfolding, it seems likely that Vick would only be cut if he was third in line, at least at the beginning of the season. Much of that is because the Eagles would likely want to have a fall back plan should Foles or Barkley, whoever was starting, play poorly near the beginning of the season. If, however, the difference between second and third in line was marginal, Vick would almost certainly be cut if he didn't win the starting job.
So, with the starting quarterback job in Philadelphia still up for grabs, it's entirely possible the Eagles could move on from the Michael Vick era if Chip Kelly is more impressed with one of their other, younger quarterbacks. Although Vick should be the favorite to win the job, this is certainly a battle to keep your eyes on as we head into preseason action.