PHILADELPHIA — Andy Reid is sticking with Michael Vick, but for how much longer?
The announcement that came Wednesday morning in a blast text message from an Eagles spokesman – Andy Reid confirms that Vick is the team's starting quarterback – suggested just how close the coach was to giving rookie Nick Foles the nod.
Under normal circumstances, Reid wouldn't acknowledge a controversy with a confirmation, but he said after Sunday's 30-17 loss to the Falcons that he would further evaluate the position.
He needed three days to come to a conclusion. Reid did not meet with the media Monday because of the storm and he was not made available Tuesday or Wednesday, but an Eagles source confirmed that Vick came perilously close to losing his job.
It's great to know that I have the support of my coach, Vick said in a text message. It's driving me to work harder and remain focused to help this football team win games.
Vick and Reid will both address the situation today, when the Eagles resume practice and begin their preparations for the Saints on Monday night.
It is unclear how much each will reveal, but it is obvious that Reid and Vick are under great pressure with the Eagles standing 3-4 and a chance at the playoffs slipping away. With owner Jeffrey Lurie's preseason ultimatum that he must substantially improve upon last season's 8-8 finish, Reid needs a spark.
He fired Juan Castillo as his defensive coordinator over the bye week, but that did not provide the expected change. The defense, in fact, delivered its worst performance of the season with Todd Bowles in charge.
Reid, as methodical a coach as there is, really has only one move left without making wholesale changes. And that is to change the quarterback.
Vick has three years left on the five-year, $80 million contract he signed in 2011. But he is guaranteed to earn only $3 million next season, a number the Eagles would accept paying if they do move on from the 32-year-old.