Nick Foles was drafted in the third round this past April and was expected to head into Week 1 as the third quarterback behind Mike Kafka on the depth chart. However, Foles has had two exceptional performances in preseason, and given Kafka’s broken hand, Foles may edge out Kafka for the top back-up spot.
Veteran Trent Edwards also is in the mix, but he's best-suited as a third quarterback at best. And while Foles has all the potential in the world—especially given his big arm, the fact that he's coached by Andy Reid and that he has a slew of talent surrounding him on the field—the team probably would prefer that he not be forced into action in 2012 when Vick gets hurt.
That means the Eagles may need to look elsewhere for their back-up quarterback, unless they really want to trust Kafka to get the job done. Here are seven players around the league who could be a good fit.
The Eagles should be among the teams interested in obtaining McCoy. He was a former third-round pick of the Browns in the 2010 NFL Draft after a stellar collegiate career at the University of Texas that many believed wouldn't translate as well to the next level.
McCoy never excelled with the Browns, but then again he was throwing to players such as Mohamed Massaquoi, Greg Little, Evan Moore and Jordan Norwood.
McCoy's stats last year—57.2 percent completions, 14 touchdowns, 11 interceptions, 74.6 passer rating—really aren't too bad, and Reid could certainly develop him into everything he's capable of being if the Eagles were willing to perhaps part with a sixth-round pick.
The Miami Dolphins went into camp with three quarterbacks competing for the starting job—rookie Ryan Tannehill, last year's starter in Matt Moore and veteran David Garrard.
Tannehill will almost assuredly struggle, as his top receivers are Legedu Naanee, Brian Hartline and Davone Bess; plus the Dolphins are a team that is in no position to contend for a playoff spot in 2012.
It might make sense for the team to keep a player such as Moore around to spot Tannehill should the rookie struggle, but then again it seems as if the Dolphins are committed to Tannehill for the long haul. It might be logical to play Tannehill and simply see what he can do, which could mean trading Moore to whichever team offers the most.
If there's anyone who knows quarterbacks more than Andy Reid, it's Bill Belichick. He grabbed arguably the steal of all time when he selected Tom Brady in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft, and his pick of Matt Cassel in 2005 (in the seventh round, no less) was pretty valuable as well when Brady went down with an injury in 2008.
The New England Patriots have been grooming Brian Hoyer since they picked him up as an undrafted rookie free agent, and after three years of learning behind Brady—plus pretty good numbers (27-of-43 for 286 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, 1 rushing TD) when he did play—the Patriots could be looking to trade Hoyer somewhere for a draft pick.
After all, the Patriots do have Ryan Mallett in the waiting, and they really don't need both Hoyer and Mallett.
Matt Leinart has been a colossal bust since the Arizona Cardinals selected him in the first round of the 2006 NFL Draft, but he's had several years now of watching and learning different offenses. He sat behind Matt Schaub for two seasons, and now he's in Oakland learning behind former USC quarterback Carson Palmer.
Leinart hasn't looked good when he's been given the opportunity to play, but Andy Reid may see something he likes in Leinart, and he may believe Leinart could be a solid backup behind Michael Vick.
Brady Quinn—like Matt Leinart—was a high draft pick who failed to amount to his full potential at the NFL level. Quinn looked terrible in the games he did play with the Cleveland Browns, but he's had several years of sitting on the bench and watching, and he did have a lot of potential when he was drafted.
He certainly would fare better on the Philadelphia Eagles with DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin than he did on the Browns.
Surprisingly, Dennis Dixon doesn't have an NFL team as preseason football hits the midway point. Dixon was behind Ben Roethlisberger on the Pittsburgh Steelers depth chart from 2008 through 2011, and he displayed a lot of mobility and athleticism when he did play.
Dixon is the type of quarterback Andy Reid likes—he's a mobile quarterback who can move around a lot, and it's certainly worth bringing him in for a look.
Jackson is the kind of player Andy Reid should like. He's mobile, he's a veteran and he has a lot of raw talent, although he hasn't managed to harness it into true success yet. It might be worth the Philadelphia Eagles sending Seattle a draft pick for Jackson to back up Michael Vick for 2012.