If Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles could eliminate one play off the game film against Carolina, he'd be in much better shape in his quarterback battle against Michael Vick.
But Vick has been just about perfect through two preseason games, and Foles created a pretty big smudge on an otherwise good performance during his start against the Panthers.
Foles started the game by completing his first six passes for 53 yards. He even did some fun things out of the read option, including a triple option in which he ran a keeper left and suddenly stopped and fired a lateral to receiver Jason Avant. Thanks to Foles and some insane running by LeSean McCoy, the Eagles moved the ball. Foles, who will never be confused with the fleet-footed Vick when he runs the ball, even had a 7-yard touchdown run.
What will cause the Eagles coaches to pause was Foles' interception on Philadelphia's first possession. On a second down and 3 at Carolina's 8-yard line, Foles fumbled the snap. Then he had pressure in his face and threw off his back foot. If he was trying to throw the ball away, he didn't come close. The ball died near the back of the end zone and Carolina's Josh Thomas had an easy interception. Foles also lost a fumble on a sack last week, giving him two turnovers in four series.
Foles' biggest problem is Vick has been fantastic through two preseason games. Vick played well against Carolina, just like he did last week when it was his turn to start against New England. Vick's only incomplete pass against the Panthers was a Hail Mary at the end of the half. If you ignore that play, Vick is 13-of-14 for 199 yards passing this preseason. He completed 9-of-10 passes against Carolina for 105 yards. He was calm and patient in the pocket, which is pretty important considering how poorly the Eagles protected him last year. He also had the type of play that Foles just can't make, rolling left to avoid the rush and hitting Riley Cooper downfield once he was free.
If the quarterback competition was close, Foles probably would have the edge because he's in his second season and nine years younger than the 33-year-old Vick. But halfway through the preseason, the Eagles' quarterback competition doesn't seem particularly close.