Kolb or Vick?: Does a Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Controversy Really Exist?

Ray BoydContributor ISeptember 13, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 12:  Kevin Kolb #4 of the Philadelphia Eagles is sacked by Clay Matthews #52 during a game against the Green Bay Packers at Lincoln Financial Field on September 12, 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

So if you have been alive in the Philadelphia area since last Easter, you know that the Donovan McNabb era has come to an end in Philly and that the reins have been handed over to Kevin Kolb.

With the well received departure of Donovan McNabb, it would seem that the days of quarterback controversies in Philly have come to an end.

For the last few seasons, speculation about McNabb was as synonymous with the NFL offseason as golf, fishing, surgeries, and Ben Roethlisberger "incidents."

It seemed liked as soon as the final play ended for the Eagles season, the questions of whether or not No. 5 would be back under center were asked.

If you couple all of those occurrences with the clamoring of the fans for the Eagles to switch to Kolb, or before that A.J. Feeley or Jeff Garcia, quarterback controversies were the norm. 

It's weird that the quarterback who has clearly defined himself as the best quarterback in Eagles franchise history, can be so unappreciated by the city that he played for.

But wait a minute, "The grass is always greener on the other side right."

So Kolb will definitely be better. That must be what most fans and some experts were thinking.

Well, regardless of all of that, Donovan McNabb is gone and the people's choice, Kevin Kolb, now has full control of the team.

It is finally his show.

Watching today's game has raised this question for me: Is Kolb about to go through what Donovan had to endure? Will he have to face a quarterback controversy?

He probably wouldn't have had he had a decent showing in anyway prior to exiting the game with a concussion, but if you watched the game, you know he did not.

All of the talk, about a young, energetic, fast offense was nonexistent. All of the experts who said Kolb was going to be more effective in the offense and more accurate had to eat their words.

For the longest time we thought their youth would be their strength, but it clearly looked liked their weakness.

For years, we wanted Donovan to be a better leader, but I must say at least he was a leader. It looked like there was no leader out there at all.

Kolb, Desean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, Brent Celek, and Lesean McCoy looked like deer caught in headlights.

So, I think that's enough pointing at the bad.

Let's examine the good.

Michael Vick enters the game following Kolb's injury

He leads the offense down the field using his arms and legs and leads them to 17 points. It was quite like watching the Vick of old. All of a sudden, the fan base was embracing the guy that they were booing a year ago.

He injected the offense with passion and excitement, and gave them a chance to win a game that looked dead in the water.

It clearly has all the makings of a quarterback controversy. Backup outplays quarterback, fans call for backup, team defends starter.

Ssounds like the usual controversy in the making. However, is it really going to be one?

I'm sure after my praise of Vick, this is where you're expecting the "Yes" to my previous question. Well, I'm going to say "No." There is no controversy and their will not be one.

The simple reason is that you ruin Kolb, if you allow it to happen. The stakes for him are so much higher. He has guys who want his job as opposed to him wanting theirs.

He has family sitting up in the luxury box being shown on national TV. He has fans wearing number No. 4 jerseys in the crowd as opposed to No. 5. This is his gig.

If the Eagles allow for a quarterback controversy after his first start, HE WILL BE DONE.

The bottom line is that the Eagles have invested too much time, work, and now money into Kolb.

Therefore, he has to be the guy. When Andy Reid was asked in his press conference whether or not Kolb would play if healthy, he quickly and firmly said yes. He knows that Kolb's psyche cannot handle a controversy. He is simply not that poised yet.

Should a quarterback controversy exist? Probably, but it comes down to this. If the Eagles want to win this season, Vick may be the guy.

If they simply want to see what they have and not ruin Kolb for good, then he's the guy. So it is either try to win, or try to gain some experience for Kolb. You are not going to get both.

So, as well as Vick played, he did not create a controversy. As soon as Kolb is healthy, he will be back under center.

And do not get me wrong, Kolb could be great.

Perhaps he choked his first game (or half I guess). Maybe next time we'll see the Kolb who threw for 300 yards in consecutive weeks last season.

Or maybe that was the Kolb who had nothing to lose, and maybe this Kolb will be nothing like that. I guess we'll have to wait and see.


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