Now a backup, Vick ponders football future

Now a backup, Vick ponders football future

Vick supports Foles as Eagles' starting QB

November 27, 2013, 10:15 am
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Michael Vick is 20-21 in his Eagles career, including a 2010 playoff loss to Green Bay. (USA Today Images)

After he chatted with the media Tuesday at his locker about losing his starting job to Nick Foles, Michael Vick joked around with a few writers about his future.

He said he’s got it all planned out.

“Going to start for two more years,” he said. “Then be a backup. I’m going to be a good backup. I’m going to come off the bench and win some games.”

If only it were that simple.

Because the reality is that Vick has no idea when, where or if he’ll get another chance to play quarterback in the NFL.

Barring an injury to Nick Foles, it looks like Vick will wind down his fifth season with the Eagles the same way he began his first season here. As a backup.

Head coach Chip Kelly, to the surprise of nobody, anointed Foles his quarterback for the rest of the year on Tuesday.

Vick said all the right things about supporting Foles and doing what’s best for the team, but he admitted it’s not easy facing such a vague future.

He doesn’t have a contract beyond this year. He’ll be 34 by the time next season starts. He’s missed at least three games because of injury all four years he’s been in the starting lineup with the Eagles. He hasn’t won a playoff game since 2004 with the Falcons. He’s played 16 games only once in his career. He hasn’t performed at a consistently high level since those first two magical months of the 2010 season.

“It’s tough when your future’s uncertain,” Vick said. “But you also have to look at the things that you did, the things that you’ve been able to do well and hopefully that’s enough to continue to show that I can still play.

“I feel good. I feel great. I still feel like I have a lot of time to play this game. ... I feel like I can still start in this league. But I still have to focus on each and every day for the rest of the season and continue to try and help this team win games.”

Maybe there’s a team out there that will pursue Vick this offseason and offer him a starting job. Maybe there will be multiple teams, and he can take his pick.

But there’s also a chance the only offers he gets will be as a backup with no guarantees.

Vick had a 40-30-1 record in six years with the Falcons, including a 2-2 postseason mark, and he’s 20-21 with the Eagles, including a 2010 playoff loss to the Packers.

After going 8-2 in his first 10 starts with the Eagles, he’s 12-19 since the infamous Joe Webb game, the improbable blizzard-delayed Tuesday night loss to the Vikings that cost the Eagles a first-round bye in 2010.

It was a big surprise when Vick returned to the Eagles this past offseason and played on a one-year contract, but he said he’s glad he did, even if he lasted just five starts.

“If I had to do it all over again, I would do it,” he said. “Absolutely. I don’t regret anything.

“I had an injury and that happens in football. ... I never regret anything in my life. I never have, never will. Still thankful I came back. I learned a lot. So much about football, so much about the game, so much about taking care of myself.”

Have we seen the last of Vick in an Eagles uniform?

If so, he ranks sixth in franchise history in passing yards (9,984), second in passer rating (87.7) behind only Foles (97.7), fifth in quarterback wins (behind Donovan McNabb’s 92, Ron Jaworski’s 69, Randall Cunningham’s 63 and Norm Snead’s 28 and 20th in rushing yards (2,000).

But who knows? It’s not out of the question that if Vick can’t find a starting job this offseason that he and the Eagles would agree on a deal that would allow him to return here next year as a backup.

After all, he knows the offense, he has a great relationship with Kelly, general manager Howie Roseman and owner Jeff Lurie, and he and Foles have a terrific relationship.

Could the Eagles find a more capable backup in this offense than Vick? Doubtful.

But there’s also a chance Vick will get another chance to play this year. He hasn’t played a full game without getting hurt since Sept. 29 in Denver, and his last win in a game that he played four quarters came on opening day in Washington.

But for the next five weeks, he’ll be just one injury away from replacing Foles.

“You’ve just got to stay ready at all times,” Vick said. “You can’t approach the game like you’re not going to ever go back out there. The minute you start feeling like that or thinking like that, you find yourself in a position where you’ve got to go out and produce.

“So you can’t get lackadaisical, you can’t start to think you know it all, you’ve got to just be prepared whenever your number’s called.”

Vick has played only briefly since hurting his hamstring in the first Giants game.

He tried to play in the second Giants game but aggravated his hamstring injury and didn’t make it to halftime.

“I think I’m 100 percent,” he said. “I think I’m finally back to 100 percent. It took a long time to get there.”