Eagles quarterback Nick Foles has been named Philadelphia’s starter for the rest of the season.
Coach Chip Kelly made the announcement Tuesday as the team returned from its bye week and began preparations for the Arizona Cardinals (7-4) on Sunday.
The Eagles (6-5) are tied for first place in the NFC East with the Dallas Cowboys.
”Nick will be our starter,” Kelly said. ”And hopefully we get Mike (Vick) back through a full week of practice and he’ll be able to be the No. 2 guy.”
Foles, in his second season, replaced Vick, who re-injured his hamstring in a loss to the New York Giants on Oct. 27. The Eagles have saved their season after a rocky start and he’s been the focal point.
Foles has played in parts of seven games this season. In five starts, he’s 4-1, and overall, he has thrown for 1,554 yards with 16 touchdowns and no interceptions. What’s more, he’s thrown 199 passes, dating back to last season, without an interception.
”I feel the same,” Foles said. ”Nothing has really changed. I’m going to prepare the same way I always have.”
His quarterback rating of 128.0 is on pace to break the regular-season record of Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers (122.5), set in 2011. Twice this season, Foles has been named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week.
On the flip side is Vick, who is still battling his way back, and was informed of the decision by Kelly Tuesday morning.
”Chip is a straight-up guy,” Foles said. ”He came in and told me I’m No. 1 and told Mike he’s No. 2. It’s not like in the movies where everyone sits down and there’s tears.”
Last week during the team’s bye, Vick said in a radio interview that as well as Foles was playing, he couldn’t be taken out of the lineup.
”Coach and I have always been on the same page right from the go,” Vick said. ”I’ve been playing in this league a long time, it’s great to see a guy who I know can play have great success.
”It’s not disappointing at all. I’m still a part of this organization, who took great care of me. One that has given me all the opportunities and possibilities I could ever imagine. As a competitor, you want to be out there, you want to play. But at the same time, you can only control what you can control. Nick has done a great job.”
Vick and Foles competed all through training camp last summer and the veteran won the job based off a better preseason.
”I always believe you need to have one quarterback,” Kelly said. ”I don’t think our guys are going into games worrying about if they make a mistake. I want our players to always play from a desire to excel, not a fear of failure.
”The only thing I’ve told Nick before we go into the games is go let it rip, don’t worry about things.”