Best we can ascertain from the news conference with Eagles coach Andy Reid and trainer Rick Burkholder today was that quarterback Michael Vick will play Sunday, barring any setbacks in his recovery from a concussion this week.
Vick, who suffered the concussion in Sunday night's loss at Atlanta, was symptom-free as of around noon today, according to Burkholder, but that doesn't mean he won't have symptoms between now and the time the Eagles line up to face the hapless New York Giants on Sunday afternoon. (The Giants just lost another key player today when wide receiver and punt returner Domenik Hixon was placed on the injured reserve list with a torn ACL).
Even though Vick could technically be sent to an independent neurologist as early as today and presumably be cleared to resume practicing and playing, Burkholder said he wanted to put Vick through a few more exertion tests before sending him over.
So there's no timeline for now. However, "Michael was able to go through the walk-through this morning," said coach Andy Reid. "So that's encouraging."
UPDATE: Vick did not practice this afternoon, but it should not be interpreted as a setback. Reid and Burkholder were leaning toward not putting him in there anyway.
Since the NFL established the current protocol for clearing players with concussions, it's been rare but not unprecedented for players to return the following week. They are no longer allowed to re-enter any game in which concussion symptoms exist, whether they actually have a concussion or not.
Vick does still have neck and jaw soreness from the awkward collision with teammate Todd Herremans that put him out of the game in the first place.
Also newsworthy today is the the continuous game of musical linebackers this team has played for more than half a decade. Three more moves were made today, with Casey Matthews shifting from the middle to the weak side, Moise Fokou from the weak side to the strong side and Jamar Chaney from the strong side to the middle.
Just like volleyball.
We'll call it Juan-ey-ball.
And from Giants camp, coach Tom Coughlin reported on his conference call that neither DE Osi Umenyiora nor WR Mario Manningham would practice today.
This is one banged-up squad. Yet that hasn't stopped the players from running their mouths about this Sunday's matchup.
Safety Antrel Rolle said in a radio interview Tuesday that he has shut down wide receiver DeSean Jackson before and should not have a problem doing it again. Then linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka said today that "I want to be able to go there and throw the knockout punch — while the ref and the other guy are looking."
Sure sounds like they're still salty from last year's December loss, when Jackson returned a punt for a touchdown on the last play of the game, enabling the Eagles to pull out a miracle win.
"When you talk," Eagles wide receiver Jeremy Maclin said, "it means you're either insecure or scared."
Vick making quick recovery; another LB switch
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