Monday, September 14, 2009

Let's Talk About QB


The Eagles signed Jeff Garcia this afternoon. AJ Feeley reportedly turned down the Eagles so he could go sign with the Panthers. We still have Kevin Kolb in place. And Donovan hasn't ruled out playing this week.

What will happen? What should happen?

Let's talk about Kolb. I know a lot of fans are down on him. I am a fan of his, but I certainly understand some of the criticism. I've gotten several questions about whether I'd prefer Kevin or AJ as the QB this week. I'm sure that would be amended to Kevin or Jeff at this point. Many fans just don't trust Kevin.

I want Kolb to start on Sunday. He got in the game this week. He got a feel for game speed. Let him practice all week with the starters. Let's put Kevin in the best position to succeed. We can then judge what he does against the Saints in a fair way.

Seeing a guy come in for mop-up duty or to play part of a game isn't always the best way to get a read on a player's future. Starting QBs get practice reps. They play regularly. These things are important.

Frankly, we need to see where Kevin is. A poor showing vs the Saints could tell us that he isn't meant to be an NFL starter. That could permanently put him on the bench. A so-so game would be open to interpretation. Fans would cherry-pick the good stuff, while critics would harp on his faults. A good showing would give us all hope that he's got a future in the league.

AJ Feeley has shown that he is an effective spot starter, but that he's really meant to be a backup. Nothing wrong with that. Backups are important. We have no idea about Kevin. Jeff Garcia has shown that he can be a good starter. Tampa was 6-6 with him as a starter last year. And they weren't exactly loaded with elite players.

I know Eagles fans love AJ. I get that. He was 4-1 for us back in 2002. He came back in 2006 and played most of the game vs ATL at the end of the year and led us to a win. He started 2 games in 2007 and we could have won both (NE, SEA). AJ is fun to watch and makes things exciting. The last time he won a game where he was the actual starter was December of 2004. Miami beat the Browns. Let's keep AJ in perspective. Very good backup, but there is no guarantee he would lead us to a win.

Kolb hasn't done anything in his Eagles career that fans can get excited about. All anyone thinks about is the Ed Reed INT debacle. Some people have an open mind, but many fans have hated Kolb since the day he was picked. How do you spend pick #36 on a QB with McNabb in place? That's their mentality and they won't accept him unless he does something great. The problem is that they don't want him to get on the field to have a chance to show what he can do.

I can't stress enough the importance of having a week of preparation. Kevin started for 4 years in HS. He started all 4 years at Houston. Being a backup QB feels completely unnatural to him. Let's give him a week of practice. Let's see what he can do. I have kept an open mind with Kolb. If he does go out and suck, we can at least know that is what happened with no excuses. I'm tired of the uncertainty with him.

The Saints present an interesting challenge because they have such a good offense. We can't go into this game expecting to keep the score low and win. We'll need 24 points. The offense has to show up. The good news is that the Saints don't have a juggernaut defense.

It doesn't sound like McNabb can make the injury worse by playing, but I'd rather him rest up and be ready for the rest of the season. Donnie is a tough guy. He'll try to make something happen and could take another big hit. Let him heal and play Kevin. That's the smart thing to do.

We've got enough weapons on offense that Kevin should be able to be effective. Hand the ball to Westy, Shady, or even D-Jax. Throw short passes to Celek. Throw deeper balls to Curtis. Get the ball to Avant in the middle of the field. The weapons are in place. Let's see what Kevin can do. As the one kid says to Patrick Swayze in Red Dawn, "We need to know".


AJ Feeley going to the Panthers makes sense. He can step in there as the #2. Jake Delhomme has a shaky hold on the QB job. That could meant that AJ would get a chance to start for them at some point. All players want to play. I totally understand his choice of going to Carolina. I hope he plays for them and does well, unless we face them again of course.


Anonymous said...

I'm feeling good about Jeff Garcia coming back, not least of which because we can't play even one game with only one QB. I hope Kolb can step up, but if he can't Garcia gives me a warm feeling.

I think they should sit DMac until after the bye. I want a Super Bowl this year, and the only way we get that is with Big 5.

Chris said...

Any word on who was cut to make room for Garcia? Going to be real interesting to see if we can move anyone to make space for Vick when he is available.

mcud77 said...

I hated the Kolb pick at the time (Eric Weddle, Chris Houston, David Harris, and Lamar Woodley were targets who were all there), but that isn't Kevin's fault. Thats an issue I have with the Eagles, not Kevin.

That said, I really have yet to see anything that makes me want him starting over AJ (when he was here) or now, Jeff. If we really are a Super Bowl contender (and I have my doubts), then I want every win I can get. Jeff gives us a better chance to win I think.

I know we have a made an investment, and I know that we need to know what we have with Kevin, but I still want Jeff early if we're struggling.

By the way...RIP to Patrick Swayze.

Cliff said...

Oh God, you did NOT just throw a Red Dawn reference in to your post. That's my #1, all-time favorite movie to watch at 3:00AM after spending the night at the bar in college, then trying to remember what the freak we watched the next morning.

If there was ever a game to run, run, run, run... this is it. We need to keep the ball out of Drew Brees's hands and 3 & outs will KILL us this game if we don't take time off the clock. The Saints had a lot of quick scores against Detroit, but they won't be able to do that against us.

Cliff said...

Oh. My. God.

They're doing a Red Dawn remake...

Prem Prakash said...

It's probably the right thing to do to start Kolb. I can imagine, though, a mediocre performance that leaves us with many of the same questions we have now. I hope I am wrong and he lights it up. Maybe the same arguement-- "let's see what we have in this guy -- could now be made for Garcia. Start Jeff vs. NO, and if he doesn't deliver Kobb gets the go against the KC. It's a tough call.

Dollar Brand said...

And the weird season gets weirder. No way would I have imagined in 2009 the Eagles would have a rookie FS, 2 new OT's, and Vick and Garcia as back-up QB's.
I was able to see Kolb play here at UH since moving to Houston 11 years ago and I hope he is able to show some of the ability he displayed here for four years.
One question Tommy, although the sample size is still minute, did it seem that McDermott's design was more varied/unpredictable than JJ's all game? Carolina appeared as though they had prepared for a different D and were unsure how to attack the Eagles. Good stuff.

kanin said...

Fractured rib, broken rib, sprained rib.
Ive read all of these over the last few days and although they are degrees of the same type of injury, they dont have much in common as a variable to determine whether 5 starts this sunday or not.
If you break something it's a fracture, ditto for a sprain (unless they are no longer talking about a rib and are really referring to the cartilage that holds said rib)
If it's one rib and it's 'broken' it's all location. Could it penetrate the lung(s) if he's hit again?
If the sprain is soft tissue eg cartilage this is no immediate concern.
All of these are more or less painful.
Knowing that 5 played a half of football with a fibula broken in three places hell probably start and play like healthy if its a 'sprained ribcage'
Does anyone outside of the eagles really know? Are they telling? Until Burkholder shows us all xrays/scans and defines the injury we dont have a clue about 5. The information about the injury is utterly inconclusive at the moment.
This means 'we' cant, and shouldnt even try, to use it as a basis for analysis.