Michael Vick will take the first-team snaps in practice today and tomorrow as the Eagles prepare for Sunday's game against Detroit, Andy Reid said today.
Reid would not commit to Friday. "We'll take Friday as it comes," Reid said.
Reid said neither Kevin Kolb nor Stewart Bradley passed the second phase of concussion testing this morning, but both have "made progress" since Monday.
Assuming they pass the second phase, the third phase would be an evaluation by specialist Dr. William Welch, which was to be scheduled for Friday, five days after the concussion. However, Reid said there is no specific time period set.
It would seem unlikely that Kolb would start if he has not had any practice time.
"Right now Kevin is not practicing," Reid said. "Michael Vick is practicing and he’s getting himself ready to play in that game. That’s what I’m focusing in on right now and as far as the football part of it goes. On the medical side of those two players, getting better and going through the rehab that’s available to them.”
As for whether Kolb needed to be reassured that he is the starter, Reid said, Kolb already knew.
"Kevin knows he's the guy," Reid said, but added that he does not want to slight Vick's hard work toward getting back to starting-quality level, or his performance against the Packers. Reid said he expects Vick will be a starter again in the NFL, but that Kolb is the starter for the Eagles.
Reid declined to say whether the Eagles have made any changes to the way they handle concussions in light of Kolb and Stewart Bradley being reinserted into the game.
"Obviously, we go back and look at everything. I feel very comfortable that we followed the protocol that was set forth," Reid said. "I will tell you that the most important thing that happened was that Rick (Burkholder, the head athletic trainer) followed up on it, he didn't just base it off that first, initial evaluation, he came back and he checked on the players ... to see if they had any symptoms, and then the second time he checked, they did, and he made the move right there."
"Obviously, we're evaluating the situation," Reid said, in response to a quote from an NFLPA concussion expert, who said his understanding was that last Sunday's events would result in change by the Eagles. He would not detail any possible changes.
Kolb and Bradley were at the NovaCare Complex this morning, although neither was cleared to sit in on meetings. Should they pass the second phase tomorrow, they could sit in on meetings. Bradley was seen driving away from the complex as reporters were arriving for Reid's news conference.
"They are feeling better," Reid said. "I would tell you Stewart's ahead of Kevin right now, as far as how they feel.I'm going to take this day by day. I'm not gonna tell you they're in or they're out, I'm just going to follow the doctors and the testing that (is) taking place, follow that day by day and we'll cross that bridge down the road, later in the week.*
If Kolb is not cleared to at least back up Sunday at Detroit, Reid said he would go with two quarterbacks, Vick and Mike Kafka, he would not sign a short-term third QB. Omar Gaither will be the starting middle linebacker if Bradley cannot play.
"Whenever you play, you look forward to playing," Gaither said. "Of course I’d rather be out there playing with those guys as opposed to watching, so yeah I’m looking forward to it, looking forward to the opportunity. Maybe if I play well enough I’ll be able to get on the field in some other positions when Stew does come back.”
As expected, Mike McGlynn will start at center in place of the injured Jamaal Jackson. Jackson had surgery Monday to repair a torn triceps tendon.
"You never want to see a guy go down to a season-ending injury, but in the National Football League that happens a lot," McGlynn said. "So, to get the opportunity, that’s exciting for me and I’m really eager to get out there. I feel like I have something to prove. You just want to show the coaches that I’m capable and I can excel at this.”
Newly signed Owen Schmitt will replace Leonard Weaver at fullback. Weaver tore an ACL against Green Bay.
Stewart Bradley and Kolb were the only players who did not participate in practice.
Listed as full participants on the Eagles' injury report were DE Antwan Barnes (wrist), RB Mike Bell (toe), DT Brodrick Bunkley (ankle), G Nick Cole (knee), G Todd Herremans (ankle), T Austin Howard (back), DT Trevor Laws (oblique), LB Ernie Sims (wrist, quadricep).
When you add in season-ending injuries to Weaver and Jamaal Jackson, it's amazing that a week ago the Eagles were the only team with no one on their injury report.
The Lions confirmed that Shaun Hill will start Sunday at quarterback for injured Matthew Stafford. Stafford injured his shoulder against the Bears.Stafford did not participate in individual drills at practice today.
"The reason we brought him here is for situations like this," coach Jim Schwartz told reporters. "Not only the second half of the opener, but if there was a situation where Matt wasn’t able to play on a Sunday, Shaun can go in. He gives an experienced player, and we have full confidence in him."
Accordingto the Detroit Free Press, middle linebacker DeAndre Levy (groin), safety Louis Delmas (groin) and defensive end Cliff Avril (knee and broken finger) also were not in individual drills.
To read our earlier post, click here.