Michael Kolb or Kevin Vick: Which QB Should Start for the Philadelphia Eagles?

John ThomasCorrespondent IOctober 27, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 03:  Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles runs the ball against Brian Orakpo #98 of the Washington Redskins on October 3, 2010 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Maybe Philadelphia has just been spoiled over the last several years.

For the Eagles, it was always certain who would be their quarterback come Sunday: Donovan McNabb.

McNabb's performance, health, and knowledge of the rules were sometimes another story, but hey, at least you knew who your "guy" was. Quite a few teams do not have that luxury. As a Panthers fan, I understand this situation.

But Philly's "guy" is now Washington's "guy," and the Eagles have been left with Kevin Kolb and Michael Vick, quarterbacks from two different planets.

Although both can pick up solid yardage through the air, Vick is certainly the more mobile of the two. In fact, he is one of the most mobile quarterbacks in the NFL. Video clips frequently depict Michael weaving and juking his way through opposing defenses, leaving defenders flat-footed.

In two starts and two partial games this season, Vick has accumulated 26 carries for 187 yards and a touchdown, an average of 7.2 yards per carry. Not too shabby for a quarterback.

Kolb does not have this combination of mobility and explosiveness, but he is known for his game management and pocket passing. He was touted by the Eagles as the "quarterback of the future" in Philadelphia, so in order not to look like fools, the organization needed to show that Kolb was as advertised.

But their plans took a bit of a turn when the quarterback of the future went down in Week 1 with a concussion after completing five of ten passes for only 24 yards. At the half, Vick took over, with Philadelphia down 13-3. In the first half, the Eagles picked up only two first downs, and they were converted on plays that involved Michael Vick.

I will give credit to Kolb, however. He was lights-out in Week 7 against the Atlanta Falcons, throwing for 326 yards and three touchdowns. This improvement may have given Eagles fans a glimmer of hope for the young signal caller.

Despite this performance, Kolb regressed to his former self the following week, leading Philadelphia to a 37-19 loss to the Tennessee Titans. Kolb completed just over 50 percent of his passes and threw two interceptions, resulting in a fairly pitiful quarterback rating of 56.9.

Since his Week 1 explosion for 100-plus rushing and passing yards, Michael Vick has been strong when he has played. In wins over Detroit and Jacksonville, he accumulated 575 passing yards, five touchdowns, and zero interceptions. In addition, Vick rushed for 67 yards and one touchdown.

This week, it appears Andy Reid is going to go with Vick, who has missed Philadelphia's last three games with damaged cartilage in his rib cage.

Good call, Coach.

Yes, Kolb is younger, and may have a future in the NFL, but winning games is the number-one goal. Vick gives the Eagles offense an extra boost of explosiveness. Along with wide receiver DeSean Jackson, Philadelphia has the potential to have a potent offense.

Plus, running back LeSean McCoy is still getting adapted to the NFL. He is not proven as an every-down back, and honestly does not need to be in the Eagles offense. Typically, the Philadelphia pass offense gets a hefty workload.

However, with Kolb under center, more pressure would be placed on the young back to make plays. Kolb could not do it himself against a quality pass defense, forcing the Eagles to run the ball, something they typically do not turn to on a regular basis.

Mike Vick can make those plays. He knows how to create something out of nothing, whereas Kolb might just take a sack. This takes a bit of pressure off McCoy to make plays for the Philadelphia offense, thus allowing him to be effective when called upon.

Ultimately, Vick has more experience, more playmaking ability, more composure, and has had more success. If he can stay healthy, Michael Vick should be the guy in Philadelphia.