One year after former Philadelphia Eagles backup quarterback Vince Young claimed that the team's free-agency aggressiveness had made them some sort of "Dream Team," only to fall short in nearly every possible way, current starting quarterback Michael Vick raised a bit of a ruckus when he claimed, via Twitter, that the Eagles' future was very clear:
When asked about this repeat attempt at bravado during a recent appearance on Philly radio station 97.5 The Fanatic, Vick made it very clear -- it ain't bragging if you can back it up.
"We just feel like we're in a position to accomplish a lot. That's what we want to do. And I think if you don't shoot for the stars, then what are you in it for? And I think if that's everybody's mind set, then you feel like you can accomplish it and start believing that you can do it. And we feel like we can do that, so we know it's gonna be tough. Nothing's gonna be easy, but I think that just makes us want to work even harder."
As far as Vick's concerned, the current Eagles team is the best he's seen, though we're still waiting for any player on any team to actually come right out and say that the team he's currently on is worse than other versions.
"[It's] certainly a much more complete team than I've ever been on. This is the best team that I've been able to play with my entire career. We've just got talent stacked all over the place, so that's one of the main reasons why we feel like we got a good chance at it. Chances like this, teams that are built this way don't come around too often and you've gotta feel blessed that you're in a position to play with a team with so much talent. So I just want to take advantage of it."
One thing that has Vick less convinced is his current standing in the NFL Network's Top 100 Players ranking -- after putting up career highs in passing attempts, completions and passing yards, the nine-year veteran was displeased to find himself ranked 70th -- a full 50 places down from 2011.
"Yeah, that's a joke," Vick said. "I won't say where I need to be, I'll let my peers and everybody else decide on that. It was voted on by the peers, but I just disagree. … Thank you, because they've motivated me to become a better player this year, so I'll have that in the back of my mind as I go out and play this year as well."
Well, there's that. As far as who else has been looking strong on the Eagles' roster through the preseason, Vick singled out one player on each side of the ball.
"[Receiver] Jeremy Maclin's playing out of his mind right now — had a tremendous offseason. Me and Jeremy started working three weeks after the season ended, we was working out together. He expressed to me how much better he wanted to be this year than he was the last two years and he's putting in the hard work to do it, and we're seeing it pay off. … He's gained some weight, his speed is exceptional. In anything that you do, if you develop the mind set to do it and do it right, then you can get it done."
On defense, Vick really liked the look of cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who will be replacing Asante Samuel as the team's starting left cornerback. "He's playing good football right now. I think I've thrown three interceptions in this camp and two of them, on the same route, has been to him. … Phenomenal speed through the ball, to the ball. Becoming a better cornerback than I think most of the guys in the league right now, and he's still young."
We'll see how the Eagles do in 2012 -- the NFC East is a tough division, but if Vick can stay healthy, defensive coordinator Juan Castillo remembers that Nnamdi Asomugha is not a safety, and all the right guys live up to their talents, they could be on to something. At the very least, they have a confident quarterback.
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