With the Philadelphia Eagles season quickly turning into a disaster, many fans have started the chant to bring in rookie backup quarterback Nick Foles to take over for Michael Vick. Vick has been under major scrutiny for his play this year as he has turned the ball over more than any other quarterback and has gone through long stretches where he cannot get the Eagles offense into any sort of productive rhythm. But as bad as Vick's play has been this year, now is not the time for him to be replaced.
According to ESPN.com, Vick is ranked 28th out of all quarterbacks with a QB rating of 77.7%. That number puts him behind the likes of Blaine Gabbert, Matt Hasselbeck and Ryan Tannehill. But this lack of production cannot be put squarely on Vick's shoulder. Anyone who watched the Monday Night Game against the Saints can tell you, the Eagles offensive line is bad, and by bad I mean abysmal. As mentioned in a previous article by Robert Blechen, when left tackle Todd Herremans left the game due to injury and was replaced by Demetress Bell, the line could do nothing to get Vick time which led to him taking several big hits while the offense bogged down. The injury to Herremans combined with the loss of pro bowler Jason Peters before the season has left the Eagles protection scheme in shambles. And while Vick did not perform well, it is hard to imagine that a rookie quarterback with no real NFL experience would have faired much better.
Nick Foles is coming off of a great senior season with the Arizona Wildcats where he threw for 4,334 yards and 28 touchdowns and ranked 1st in the Pac 12 and 5th in the nation averaging 352.58 yards of total offense per game. He was drafted in the 3rd round by the Eagles and really peaked the fans interest in the preseason where he completed 36 passes for 507 yards and six touchdowns in three games. But these numbers cannot just be transferred to regular season performance as many of the stats came against teams' second and third string players. And while it is ok to be excited for his future, putting him in now with this Eagles offense would be a mistake.
With the season on the brink of collapse, why expose an underprepared rookie to situation where he is going to face heavy pressure and likely numerous hard hits when the protection breaks down? The decision to replace Vick just does not seem worth it as it is unlikely Foles would be able to turn around an offense with so many problems and the Eagles would be risking him to getting shell shocked in his early starts and setting back his progression as a quarterback in the NFL. Andy Reid made the decision to live and die with Michael Vick as his quarterback when he signed him to the six year 100 million dollar deal and he should stick with that decision at least through the rest of the year.
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