Andy Reid has never been one to follow the NFL's doctrine of conventional wisdom. Even though every respected NFL analyst touts a balanced offense with equal parts running and passing as the key to success in the NFL, coach Reid has been pass happy throughout the second longest head coaching tenure in the league. Despite years of questionable decisions and suspect play selection he has fielded 8 winning teams in 11 years with 5 trips to the NFC championship game and one Super Bowl appearance. Reid continued to ignore convention by signing Michael Vick straight out of the big house, trading the franchise quarterback who facilitated his success to a division rival and placing the fate of the Eagles in the hands of Kevin Kolb who has done precisely nothing in the NFL.
In the first half of game 1 of this season Kolb got his brains rattled; enter Micheal Vick. Vick's contract ends at the end of this season and Reid stuck to his guns pronouncing the now healthy Kolb as the starter for week three. He changed his mind just one day later. Kolb has played 2 and a half NFL games so no one really knows how good he can be. Andy Reid has a plan for his team, he traded his franchise quarterback in a effort to execute said plan. Moreover, with notable exceptions, such as Tom Brady replacing Drew Bledsoe, in general players do not lose their starting position due to injury. Conventional thinking dictates that if one goes to great lengths to realize a plan, it would take more than one bad half of football and a knock on the noggin to derail such meticulously laid machinations. Furthermore, the psyche of a young quarterback is a fragile thing. Toying with that psyche by waffling about who is your starter is unwise if you intend to keep that young quarterback around to be"the guy some day. Of course that all went out the window when coach Reid saw the brilliance of Micheal Vick on film..
In the game and a half Vick has played he was better than he ever was in Atlanta, spawning a conundrum for Andy Reid. If Vick continues the level of play he displayed this Sunday past, then he is one of the top 5 quarterbacks in the league. If Vick is in fact an elite quarterback, elevating him to starter is a no brainer, plan or no plan. But we can't know what Vick is based on his play against a team who boasts a 2-32 record since the 2008 season. Now if Vick played that way against the Steelers, I might suggest prison terms for the likes of Matt Leinart, Jake Cutler, Brady Quinn and Alex Smith.
In this era of parity in the NFL very little is certain and a coaches long term plan is one thunderous hit away from transforming the sanctified parchment on which it is scribed into so much used toilet paper. After perusing Donovan Mcnabb's history of injuries, one might come to the conclusion that Vick is the better choice simply because he has a better chance of keeping his head attached to his body behind what has proved once again to be an offensive line that is just that...offensive.
Vick is beyond convention and in the face of such a talent Andy Reid has to see if Vick is the player who can final get the Eagles a championship in spite of himself.