Philadelphia Eagles News: If Mike Vick Can't Stay Healthy Mike Kafka, Nick Foles Could Play Crucial Role In Eagles Season

Meet the Philadelphia Eagles' backups, while they are still backups. Over the years, Andy Reid has developed a reputation for bringing in solid players to back up his starting QB.  What's amazing is that Andy Reid has done this both with established players and relative no-names. 

In 2002, third-string quarterback A.J. Feeley led the Eagles to a #1 NFC seed, after Donovan McNabb and backup Koy Detmer were injured.  And in 2006 veteran 49ers and CFL quarterback Jeff Garcia led the Eagles to a 6-2 finish, winning the NFC East title.  But Reid's record as of late has been spotty; while Michael Vick was brought in to be Donovan McNabb's backup in 2009, Vick's backups, Kevin Kolb and Vince Young, have either played themselves out of the league or are in the process of doing so.

Vick is a quarterback who can still lead a team to a playoff run, if only he can keep healthy.  After leaving the first two preseason games with a dislocated finger and then a rib injury, Vick will not suit up until the regular season opener at Cleveland on Sept. 9.

Two of the three Eagles backups, Trent Edwards and Nick Foles, know what it is like have a team's season derailed by the starting quarterback's injuries.  In 2008, Edwards led the Buffalo Bills to a 4-0 start, only to suffer a concussion in Week 5.  Although Edwards would play off and on for the rest of the season, the Bills finished the season at 7-9.  In 2010, Nick Foles led the Arizona Wildcats to a 5-1 mark before a knee injury kept him out for two weeks.  Backup Matt Scott got the Wildcats to 7-1 and a #13 ranking before Foles returned, only for Arizona to lose its last five games, including the Alamo Bowl.

Sitting on the sidelines in this quarterback competition is Mike Kafka, who broke his hand in the preseason opener against Pittsburgh.  Kafka is in his third season with the Eagles, and has had some regular season experience playing for Philadelphia.  Both Foles and Kafka have experience with the spread offense in college, Kafka as a Northwestern Wildcat.

Whoever will be the backup for Michael Vick will have to deal with pressure on all sides.  The Eagles' offensive line has been lackluster over the last few years.  Foles knows all too well what a bad O-line can do to a quarterback; Arizona lost much of their offensive line after 2010 and was sacked 23 times during a 4-8 season.  The Philadelphia media is also starting to dig their claws into Foles:'s Ray Didinger compared Foles to Bobby Hoying, who looked promising at the end of the Ray Rhodes era, but quickly fell of the face of the earth.  If Nick Foles does start to play like Bobby Hoying, the notorious Philadelphia fans will boo both  Foles and an entire Eagle team who has not won a playoff game since the 2008 postseason.