Chip Kelly has made his first major personnel decision as Eagles head coach, he's keeping Michael Vick. Adam Schefter reported this morning that the Eagles and Vick have agreed to a restructured contract that essentially amounts to a one year deal for next season.
"I am grateful and proud to be a Philadelphia Eagle," said VIck in a statement. "My heart is in Philly and this community is important to me. I look forward to playing for Coach Kelly, Jeffrey Lurie and the entire Eagles organization, the city of Philadelphia and the fans. I am training hard this offseason and will be ready for Coach Kelly's team vision and leadership. Our goal is to win."
Previous reports suggested that Vick would not be willing to restructure his deal to stay in Philadelphia, but things seemed to have changed after he met with Chip Kelly. Vick was set to count $16.9 million against this year's cap and while there's been no financial details released yet, you can assume the new deal will be for a quite a bit less.
So what does this mean? While it doesn't guarantee that Vick will be the starter in 2013, it does make it pretty likely. If Vick didn't get the impression that he could be the starter next year, he likely would have preferred to be cut to test the open market. I'm sure there will be a competition, but Vick would appear to be in the driver's seat.
It also is a strong sign that Chip Kelly doesn't see his future QB on the roster. If he though Nick Foles was the guy, then why have Vick here at all? And if he thought Vick was the guy, why only bring him back for one year? This move makes it seem likely that Chip has chosen Vick as his "holdover" QB with an eye on next year's draft, which could be stocked with athletic signal callers.
Finally, this move is also a strong indication of what we've all thought Chip Kelly wanted. An athletic QB. Foles just isn't that and it could very well be that he wants a guy like Vick that can be a dual threat this year to start priming the offense for the future. If Chip can get Vick to be as efficient as his QBs in Oregon were and he gets major pieces on the O-line back... it could be very interesting next year.