Nick Foles will be the starting QB against the Raiders
Nick Foles will make his third start of the season when the Eagles play the Raiders on Sunday. (USA Today Images)
Even before he got the official word, Nick Foles had a feeling he’d be starting against the Raiders Sunday.
“After [Tuesday’s] practice, I felt really good,” Foles said after practice Wednesday. “So I had a pretty good idea I’d probably going into this game starting because of what we’re going through right now.”
Foles, who returned to practice Tuesday, nine days after suffering a concussion during a loss to the Cowboys, will make his third start of the season Sunday in Oakland (see story), when the Eagles begin the second half of the season with a 4:05 p.m. game against the Raiders at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.
Foles and rookie Matt Barkley split the reps with the first offense about 50-50 on Tuesday, but Foles got most of the reps on Wednesday.
“I feel great,” Foles said. “Just getting back going. Haven’t thrown in over a week so had to go back out there and get into a rhythm.”
Head coach Chip Kelly announced before practice Wednesday that Foles would start ahead of Barkley, who hasn’t yet generated a point in relief duty in two games and has turned the ball over on five of the 10 drives he’s led.
Foles was NFC Offensive Player of the Week two weeks ago after a win over the Buccaneers on Oct. 13 before an awful game in a loss to the Cowboys on Oct. 20. With Foles out, Michael Vick started the game against the Giants this past weekend but was unable to make it to halftime before his hamstring gave out again.
Kelly said he doesn’t expect Vick to play Sunday, so Foles will be No. 1 and Barkley No. 2.
“You just have to have a resilience that no matter who’s in there, [your teammates] are going to trust the quarterback,” Foles said. “It does bring some stability at the beginning of the week to know who’s going to be in there because you’re taking the most reps with the team and [they’re] getting an idea how you move in the pocket and stuff like that.”
Kelly spoke earlier in the day about how he’s looking for stability at the most important position on the field.
Over the last four games, the Eagles have gone Vick to Foles to Barkley to Vick to Barkley to Foles.
That is not stability.
But Foles said he hopes to provide some. There’s no telling when Vick will be back, so the job is Foles’ as long as he can perform and stay healthy.
“That’s why I’m here,” he said. “I want to get this thing going and obviously quarterback is a pretty key position, so it starts with us, and [I] really have to make the right decisions and get the offense stable.
“The defense has been playing great, we’ve just got to pick it up and play together as a team.”
The Eagles haven’t scored an offensive touchdown in their last two games, and they’ve fallen to 3-5 at the midway point of the season.
Foles said he’s moved beyond his 11-for-29, 80-yard performance in the Eagles’ 17-3 loss to the Cowboys.
“Can’t let one game, one thing in your life affect the rest of your life,” Foles said. “Obviously, there’s going to be down days. I have another opportunity to go out there with my teammates and do some great things, so I’m just excited to be out there.”