Which Philadelphia Eagles QB Will See The Most Preseason Playing Time?

Dan PennwynCorrespondent IMay 22, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 27: Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles substitutes with team mate Kevin Kolb #4 against the Kansas City Chiefs on September 27, 2009 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
Chris McGrath/Getty Images

Following in the footsteps of a true playing legend like QB Donovan McNabb after waiting three long years in the backround is no easy task—just ask Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers who loomed in Brett Favres' backround before getting his shot.

It is a task that Philadelphia Eagles starting QB Kevin Kolb is about to embark on full force—and he is more than happy to face this great challenge head on!

In a previous article I mentioned how Kolb has been mentored by three extremely talented quareterbacks, Donovan McNabb, Michael Vick, and Jeff Garcia and how he [Kolb] has been provided plenty of time to develop his skills while being mentored by these football greats.

And for the first time in over a decade, Philadelphia will see a new face as the Eagles starting QB and the Eagles hope that time pays off for Kolb.

He is not a rookie being thrown in as a young kid, the Eagles took the right approach with their new QB in allowing him adequate time to grow—before running the show!

For the fans, they will get their first real look at Kolbs ability to be a leader among a very young but extremely talented offense during this years training camp.

I can say this—everyone in the Eagles' franchise from owner Jeffrey Lurie down to Kolbs teammates has a full steam of confidence in their new quarterback heading into the 2010 season and beyond.

But will training camp alone be enough time for Kevin to get his timing down with his arsenal of weapons he has surrounding him?

After three years of waiting, does he know the playbook like the back of his hand?

Lastly, will Andy Reid follow his traditional preseason gameplan or will he have his new quarterback out on the field for the majority of the preseason to work out all of Kolbs little nuances?

Even though it would benefit Kolb tremendously by being on the field as much as possible during preseason, it doesn't make sense for a number of reasons.

First, it would only benefit Kolb and not the Eagles' offense if he is the only starter on the field. The purpose of getting the timing down is working with the first team.

Second, the more he is on the field the greater the risk of him getting injured. The Eagles do not want to head into the upcoming season with their starting quarterback injured.

Third, the preseason would be an excellent opportunity to see what element(s) QB Michael Vick brings to the table and evaluate his progress both physically and mentally since 2009.

Has Vick regained his speed that made him one of the most feared QB's in league history just a couple of years ago?

We all know that Vick can run the ball, that can't be denied but he did lose a step or two after not being in the NFL for nearly two seasons. I think that could be said for any athlete or professional for that matter.

Two years removed from what you do best and there will be kinks to work out so lets hope Michael Vick did just that this offseason—work out his kinks!

I wonder how prepared Vick is if Kevin Kolb does get injured, is he ready and willing to throw the ball much more than he is used to?

Is he a team player or does he want the spotlight on himself—that may be the biggest question of all.

I'm not here to say this is the way Vick was in the past but in order for him to become fully established again in the NFL he has to make a name for himself, I wonder how he will go about it?

In terms of passing percentages, Vicks best season came back in 2004 when his completion percentage was a mere 56.4 percent—clearly not good enough to effectively run a west coast offense.

The preseason will be the Eagles best chance of evaluating Vicks progress so I am expecting to see him get the majority of playing time during those four games.

There is also fourth-round draft choice Mike Kafka who I'm sure the Eagles are interested at seeing in game action so he too might get a little playing time but that would be the last game against the New York Jets for the fourth quarter.

My prediction is Andy Reid will stay traditional and play Kolb for the first half, possibly into the third quarter of the preseason opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars and then Michael Vick will finish out the remainder of the preseason.

This would be a very smart move with the belief, and expectation, that Kolb and his weapons will get their timing sured up during training camp and it will also keep him fresh to start the season off—when he squares off with a man who was once in his shoes just a few short years ago!