September 21, 2010

All aboard the Michael Vick Experience.

A show of hands: who actually gives a shit about Kevin Kolb?

Sure, Andy Reid anointed him the 2010 starter to great fanfare, essentially choosing Kolb over his long-time, Hall of Fame-caliber quarterback. And yes, Kolb put together a quality game and a half in relief of said QB last year, showing a skill-set that made people believe he could be the next Aaron Rodgers.

But in reality, Kevin Kolb is nothing more than those six quarters plus two months of uncontrollable preseason hype. Why that ensures him the starting job over Michael Vick in some people's minds is something I do not understand.

When it was Donovan McNabb versus Kevin Kolb, there was an investment there. Eagles fans knew what McNabb would bring to the table, and many of them loved what he'd done for the franchise and the city. While most people seemed to agree that a change was in order, you could certainly make a case that McNabb had done enough, and remained talented enough, to go out on his own terms.

There's none of that here. Andy Reid has seen Kolb behind center for 3+ seasons, and Vick since August of last year. If he says Michael Vick is the better choice at quarterback, well, let's roll those dice.

Now, don't get me wrong. I thought that Kolb would be handed the job back immediately, and I would have seen the logic behind that decision. Everyone seemed to agree that 2010 was a transitional season, and everything the Eagles have done in the last six months indicated that Kolb was the starter for this year and beyond.

But I thought wrong. Suddenly, the transition is to the known quantity, to Michael Vick. Based on Vick's work so far in 2010, that's tough to argue with. This certainly hurts Kolb's career, and probably his psyche, but that looks like a risk Reid is willing to take. He, like many other people, wants to see how the Vick saga plays out.

So what now? Well, we know that Sundays will be very interesting with Vick behind center. We know that he'll be much better than Kolb at evading the blitz, which is probably a big reason that he's still starting. We saw him go 21 for 34 last weekend, admittedly against a porous Lions secondary, and we saw him break into some freaky runs. We got a glimpse of the quarterback everyone's always wanted Vick to be: an amazing combination of lethal speed and a arm-cannon, one that made smart decisions and led his team with gusto.

And who knows? Maybe Michael Vick really has matured, maybe he does want to be more than just the human highlight film he was a few years ago. Maybe he is the best football player in the universe ever.

We won't have to wait long to find out. The Michael Vick Experience is heading to Jacksonville. All aboard.

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