In Philadelphia it is no secret that the fans are passionate and ruthless. You are held high on a pedestal one day and then find your face on a wanted poster the next. Players have commented time and time again about how the fans are too over the top with their feelings about the players. But really the only thing we all want is to win and win big.
“With the second overall pick in the 1999 NFL draft, the Philadelphia Eagles select Donovan McNabb…” and most of us remember what happened after that. The boo’s rained down. Andy Reid then signed Michael Vick in 2009 and fans hated him too. They despised him for his prior treatment of animals, despite the fact he did his time. Many fans swore they would never watch the Eagles again as long as he wore that number seven jersey in Birds colors. Both players were criticized, praised, and criticized again.
The problem now is, the fans are no longer the biggest threat to incoming Eagle’s quarterbacks. The very thing sent out there to protect them is. The Eagles offensive line is.
This year the offensive line has lost four of their five starters to injury, a hit that is hurting more than just the overall production of the offense. It has now knocked out starting quarterback Mike Vick and running back LeSean McCoy.
It is not safe. We cheered on Vick. We demanded to see Nick Foles when it seemed like Vick was struggling with turnovers. Now I am sure many of you are insisting we lose out the rest of the season in hopes we can grab a new quarterback early on in the draft. Obviously it has already been written and by now most fans understand that there is not much more our quarterbacks can do. It is not their fault. So should we put another poor quarterback through the torture these two have endured?
I am not even sure anymore if the question is should we torture more quarterbacks, but do quarterbacks even feel safe dressing in an Eagles uniform? Through ten games this season the Eagles offensive line has allowed 33 sacks, the exact same number of sacks the defense has. That number does not include the amount of times we have watched Vick and Foles both lying in the dirt without the ball in hand. It seems that regardless if either quarterback is able to get the ball out quick, they are still met by a 260, 270 pound defensive linemen.
I used to believe that with a running able quarterback like Vick, we could afford to have an average to below average offensive line. Usually players like that will be able to make a play on the move or create more time to allow a play to develop. No more. Not with this line at least. The line is no longer a below average line. It is a suicide line. I have a great deal of respect for Vick and Foles because of the fact that they step up behind that line each week despite being tossed around the backfield like ragdolls.
It is my fear that this colossal problem will bring an end to the Vick era in Philadelphia. Someone will need to be blamed for the season and it will most likely be Reid and Vick. Do I believe Foles is the future of this franchise? Do I think we should play for the draft and pick a quarterback? The answer to both is I do not know. Once you get past Matt Barkley, whom I am not sold on yet, there really is not anyone that screams “take me early”. It couldn’t hurt to build around Foles, but he cannot help this team if they won’t help protect him.
To be totally honest, I would completely understand if he came out and said he did not want to step out on the field on Sundays with that team. It just is not a safe place for quarterbacks.Tags: Andy Reid, Donovan McNabb, Eagles, Mike Vick, Nick Foles, Philadelphia, quarterback