Michael Vick was the only Eagles quarterback Monday to throw two touchdown passes. (AP)
On Sunday, after two of his passes were knocked down by the human fly swatters, Michael Vick joked about the humiliation of actually throwing into the big, obstructive devices intended to clog the passing lanes.
“It’s embarrassing when you do it in practice because it’s not a moving target,” Vick had said.
Vick had nothing to feel embarrassed about Monday in the team’s second open practice at Lincoln Financial Field.
Once again, the veteran Eagles quarterback enjoyed a solid practice, which is beginning to become a trend at training camp. It’s been speculated that Vick needs to greatly outperform his younger counterparts, Nick Foles and Matt Barkley, to win the job. Foles and Barkley had good showings Monday, but Vick was the only one who put the ball into a receiver’s hands for a touchdown more than once.
Vick found Jason Avant in 7-on-7s for a red-zone touchdown and later connected deep with DeSean Jackson in team drills against the blitz. On his second TD, the whistle blew with Jackson at the 10-yard line under the assumption that a safety would have caught the speedy wideout, but how many NFL safeties can catch Jackson in the open field?
Vick took 21 total reps, 14 with the first-team offense, and completed 8 of 15 passes, according to an unofficial CSNPhilly.com tally. Jackson dropped a pass just before the two connected for a touchdown. Vick also scrambled about 10 yards for a touchdown, but since nobody can ever hit quarterbacks in practice, a running touchdown is hardly anything to get excited about.
Foles took 20 reps, completing 10 of 19 passes, but was victimized by drops from Zach Ertz and Ifeanyi Momah on routine passes. Only three of Foles’ reps came with the first-team offense. Barkley maintained his distance from the top two, getting 10 total reps. He went 4-for-8 and had one pass tipped by Emmanuel Acho into the hands of Cary Williams for the lone interception at practice.
Overall reps were down as Kelly shortened practice. There was only one set of 7-on-7 drills and the team didn’t practice in pads.
Is there clear separation yet between Vick and Foles? Damaris Johnson wouldn’t say.
“When I look at Mike Vick, I think he always has good practices," Johnson said. “He gets the ball down the field. He gets the ball out of his hands good. Nick Foles, he does the same thing. Whichever quarterback is out there, they control the offense and we go as they go.”
For Vick, none of his passes collided with the fly swatters. So that’s a bonus, too. He’s starting to appreciate them more, anyway.
“I think it’ll help,” he said Sunday. “The first day they put them out there, I complained about it, complained about it, and he said, ‘The more you complain, the more I’m going to keep it out here.’ So I gotta deal with it, and it’s been helping me and now I don’t even pay attention to it.”