Earlier this offseason, there were rumors that the Eagles had at least some interest in trading up in the draft for quarterback Robert Griffin III.
If we're speaking in hypotheticals, Griffin could have potentially spent a year behind Michael Vick, taken over in 2013, and the Eagles would have had their quarterback of the future.
Of course, as it turned out, the Redskins won the RG3 sweepstakes, and the Eagles will now play against the dynamic quarterback twice a year for the foreseeable future.
Those meetings will be particularly special for Griffin this year, considering he'll be facing off against a player he grew up watching in Vick.
"He's a guy that guys like myself looked up to when he was playing in Atlanta and especially the way he’s turned things around with the Philadelphia Eagles," Griffin said in an NFL Network interview after hearing Vick talk at the rookie symposium earlier this week. "It was good to hear him talk, hear what he had to say. He’s definitely a guy I could listen to all day."
As I've written about at length in the past, Vick is someone who seems to be almost universally respected by his peers. I noticed that about him even when Vick was playing only a handful of snaps each game back in 2009.
In 2010, Cowboys running back Tashard Choice infamously went up to Vick after a game and asked him for an autograph.
"He’s a real guy, he made a mistake, he owned up to it, came back out, made the best of his situation, and he got his second chance and made the most of it," Griffin said. "I think a lot of guys can really relate to that, maybe not going to prison and things of that nature, but just the fact that he’s real, he made a mistake and he’s working hard now, which he wishes he would have done from the beginning."
On a sidenote, I get the feeling that Eagles fans are going to have a tough time directing their "sports hate" towards Griffin. Tony Romo? No problem. Eli Manning? Not an issue. But Griffin is just so freakin' likeable. Perhaps he'll do something in Week 16 when the Redskins travel to the Linc, but right now, I'm not seeing much.
Getting back to Vick, Griffin said the Eagles quarterback was the perfect guy to talk to the league's rookies.
"It’s just good to see him the way he is now," Griffin said. "Growing up, when he first started in ‘01, I think I was 11 years old, so to watch him play and be inspired to play football by guys like him and to see him own up to his mistake, and now be where he’s at in his career, having some of the best years of his career in Philly, it’s really good to see and have him come talk. I think everybody in that room was zoned in. He’s definitely a guy that everything he says holds some power."
LATER START TIMES
The NFL will move its 4:15 start times to 4:25, according to John Ourand of the SportsBusiness Journal. The point (apparently) is to reduce overlap from the 1 p.m. games.
The Eagles' only scheduled 4:15 game is in Week 10 against the Cowboys.