Eagles head coach Andy Reid would not commit to either Michael Vick or Kevin Kolb following the 21-16 loss to the Packers in the playoffs. Vick threw for 296 yards but was harrassed much of the game and was intercepted on the final Eagles play of the game, a ball he underthrew in the end zone. Vick is slated to hit free agency and is said to want to cash in. He has major debt following prison time, lost endorsements and salary and legal fees. Backup Kevin Kolb, who lost his job to Vick early in the season, said following the loss that he would like to be traded if he's not the starter.
The PFW spin
When asked who his quarterback would be next season, Reid stuck with his fallback answer for many tough questions he has faced over the years: "We'll see," he said.
As for Vick, he'd relish the opportunity to come back, he said, after a breakout season that surpassed what he accomplished in the first part of his career in Atlanta before serving prison time.
"I don't know. We'll have to wait and see, but I really do hope I am," Vick said. "I enjoyed this season, I enjoy the group of guys that I play with, I enjoyed the success and progress that we all made as a young team. I think the sky's the limit."
Kolb was clear about what he wants his role to be. "I want to be starting somewhere," he said. But it's not clear if he'll get that chance in Philadelphia. He might get it with the Titans or Panthers or Cardinals, or with the number of teams that will look to make a change at QB. He might even get that chance in Cleveland if Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg gets the Browns' coaching job, where GM Tom Heckert and president Mike Holmgren are familiar with the coach's work. But the only way it goes down at all is if the Eagles are willing to deal Kolb.
Despite Kolb getting benched after his Week One concussion against the Packers and not performing exceptionally when he subbed for an injured or resting Vick, Kolb's value remains high. There are as many as four first-round QB possibilities in April's draft, even with Andrew Luck going back to school, but there are major questions with all of them. Kolb is more of a sure thing, even if he only has six career starts with the Eagles.
That means the Eagles could place a high value on Kolb — a good starting spot might be two first-round picks — and see how many teams are interested. Remember, Reid famously said that Donovan McNabb was his quarterback right after the season then later announced he would listen to offers for him at the owners' meetings last year. Reid always could change his course, as he has before, once he gets a whiff of the market for Kolb.
The common thinking is that the Eagles will execute the franchise tag (if the new CBA includes this possibility) on Vick while the two sides work out a long-term contract. That would be a one-year deal in the range of $17 million to $18 million, an average of the top-five-paid QBs. But Vick wants long-term money and up-front money, so there's no guarantee he'll be thrilled to get franchised.
The situation is fluid. So while media members and fans might groan at another Reid-ism that yields little in the way of answers, it appears that Reid really means what he says. He must find out what the new economics of the NFL will entail, figure out if Mornhinweg returns, see what kind of market there would be for Kolb and make a prudent decision from there. Months of speculation will ensue before there are any real decisions on the matter.