Jeff McLane of philly.com put out a piece yesterday urging the Eagles to hang onto Kevin Kolb, with the crux of his argument being that Michael Vick is going to get hurt at some point during the 2011 season:
Michael Vick might not get hurt next season, just like you and I might avoid cavities. But why mess with a possible root canal?
Vick missed 3 1/2 games last season because of injuries, and another to rest his aching body. By the time the Eagles had their rematch against the Packers in the playoffs, Vick was a shell of the video game-like character who replaced the woozy Kolb in the season-opening first meeting.
There is little reason to believe Vick won’t be as exposed to possible injury in the coming season. Vick may have altered some of his off-the-field habits, but his run-when-the-rush-is-on instincts remain. His 100 carries last year, projected over a full 16-game season, would have been 133, the highest total of his career.
And then there is the Eagles offensive line, which at last gander still had tackle Winston Justice protecting Vick’s blind side.
So Vick will do his thing, and he will likely be sidelined for some stretch.
Is it possible that Michael Vick will incur some sort of injury during the 2011? Absolutely. Of course that exists. However, back in March, I looked at how “injury prone” Michael Vick really is, and history would suggest that the odds are that Vick will likely not miss a significant amount of time:
(Cont after the jump)…
|Vick||Possible games||Games played||Games missed||% of games started|
|2009||Not the starter|
As you can see, in Michael Vick’s 6 seasons as a starting NFL QB, Vick started at least 15 games in 4 of them. As I noted in my injury prone piece:
While I agree that Vick is more likely to get injured than a QB with a quick release that never runs and rarely takes shots (like a Peyton Manning), I don’t think “injury prone” is quite the correct phrase. I see “injury prone” players as the guys that always seem to find themselves as “questionable” in the injury report, with an assortment of ailments, kind of like our old friend Brian Westbrook. That doesn’t really apply to Michael Vick, at least historically so far in his career. It’s the season-ending knockout punch that should be of gravest concern, obviously.
If the Eagles do indeed trade Kolb, you can take it to the bank that they’ll bring in a competent #2 QB. The roster is good enough that it can still win games with a traditional backup QB should Vick go down for something like a 4-game stretch. If Vick goes down to some sort of season ending injury like he did in 2003, well, at that point the likelihood of a championship is kind of effed anyway, so what’s the difference?
If the Eagles can get great value in return for Kolb, they absolutely must pull the trigger, period. If that means getting a really good starter in return, fine. If it means getting a 1st round pick in 2012, fine. There are 32 NFL teams, all trying to do what they can to win a Super Bowl. Passive, scared decision-making will always lose. If I’m a GM, I’d rather make the aggressive move to improve my team than let the fear of injury handcuff my better judgment.