Nick Foles: Eagles Must Keep Rookie QB as Starter When Michael Vick Returns

Rick WeinerFeatured ColumnistDecember 3, 2012

ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 02:   Nick Foles #9 of the Philadelphia Eagles celebrates a touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys in the third quarter at Cowboys Stadium on December 2, 2012 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Nick Foles can't learn anything by holding a clipboard and watching Michael Vick make mistakes.

While Philadelphia Eagles fans are up in arms over Foles' botching of a two-point conversion attempt late in Sunday night's loss to the Dallas Cowboys, the rookie signal-caller put forth the best game of his young career against a Dallas defense that ranked ninth in the league against the pass entering the game (h/t ESPN).

Foles completed 65 percent of his passes (22-of-34) for 251 yards and a touchdown without turning the ball over, an encouraging sign from a player making his fourth career start. He was also playing without his two biggest weapons in running back LeSean McCoy and wide receiver DeSean Jackson.

Michael Vick is getting paid a ton of money to start under center for the Eagles, but it's because of Vick's inept play earlier this season—along with a terrible defense—that Philadelphia sits with a 3-9 record on the season.

Bringing Vick back into the fold might bring the Eagles another win or two, and it might not.

But he certainly isn't going to help the Eagles going forward—not when you consider that like head coach Andy Reid, Vick's days in Philadelphia may be numbered.

Foles is the quarterback of the future in Philadelphia, and with the team having no playoff aspirations whatsoever, the experience that Foles can get under his belt between now and the end of the season will prove to be invaluable in his development as a quarterback.

It not only allows Foles to become more comfortable against NFL defenses, adjusting to the speed of the game, but it also allows Foles to get into more of a rhythm with his backs and receivers.

Timing is everything in the NFL, and the more reps that Foles gets with the skill players who are going to be in Philadelphia for the long haul, the better.

Sitting him on the bench so that Michael Vick can play in games that mean nothing in the grand scheme of things would be counter-productive.

Foles must remain the starting quarterback for the Eagles for the rest of the 2012 season—even when Michael Vick is finally cleared to return.