After much speculation, Chip Kelly on Wednesday did not name a starting quarterback for the Eagles' preseason opener. (USA Today Images)
The wait continues. There was some speculation that -- following Wednesday's training camp practice at the NovaCare Complex -- Chip Kelly might name his starting quarterback for the preseason opener. Instead, Kelly said he and his coaches would have meetings and “talk it through” before deciding who will be under center against the Patriots on Friday evening.
“They’re both going to get reps,” Kelly said after the Eagles scrimmaged against the Patriots. “So whoever takes the first rep, let’s not mark them as anything. Someone is going to be the first guy. We’ll have a plan as we go through. We’ll sit down as a staff -- how many number of reps are those guys going to get? And we’ll go from there. We do have to have someone start the game, but I wouldn’t say the guy who starts the game is going to be the starter overall, in general, as we get going on September 9. How do we divvy up Mike and Nick’s snaps? We’ll try to make that as even as possible.”
That last part is hardly surprising. Vick and Foles have split reps with the first and second teams throughout minicamp, OTAs and training camp. That pattern has continued with New England in town to practice against the Eagles in advance of the preseason opener. Foles took the most first-team snaps against the Pats on Tuesday, while Vick had the most reps with the ones on Wednesday.
By CSNPhilly.com’s unofficial count, Vick took 31 total snaps on Wednesday (27 with the first team). Foles had 28 reps (14 with the ones). When asked whether the quarterbacks need to know who will start on Friday, Vick said, “It’s not something that we take for granted” and “we understand what’s at stake.”
Vick threw 20 passes on Wednesday and completed 13. During a 7-on-7 session with the first team, he hit Riley Cooper across the middle for a red zone touchdown. He also threw touchdowns to tight ends Zach Ertz and James Casey during the same drill.
Later in practice, Vick threw his best pass of the morning when he saw DeSean Jackson streaking from left to right across the middle of the field. The quarterback connected with his favorite training camp target in stride for a completion of about 30 yards.
“It’s been great for our team, the opportunity to practice against different faces, different defenses, different looks,” Vick said about practicing against the Patriots over the last two days. “It’s good for the attitude of the team. It’s good for us to see where we stand.”
Foles, meanwhile, went 16-for-19 and also threw several touchdowns. His best series came during 7-on-7 drills when he found Clay Harbor in the end zone on consecutive red zone plays.
“I’ve never been a part of anything like this,” Foles said. “It’s a great experience to go against someone else and see different looks in a practice situation. We’re able to do different scenarios and get our individual work in.”
For the second day in a row, rookie Matt Barkley spent much of his time on the sideline. He took 10 snaps and completed four of five attempts, including a long pass that was hauled in with one hand by receiver Greg Salas.