Matt Barkley tipped to be an early contributor

USA TODAY Sports

National Football Post's Greg Gabriel posted a list of the 7 mid round rookies who he thinks will make an early impact in the league this year. Among them was the Eagles own Matt Barkley.

A year ago many thought Barkley would be the first pick in this draft. He had a subpar senior season and also injured his shoulder and missed the final two games of his career. While quarterbacks have been overdrafted the last few years, I felt they were underdrafted this year. There is no way Barkley should have lasted until the 4th round. The Eagles traded up to get Barkley and Chip Kelly knows Barkley very well, having played against him for four years in the Pac-12. Michael Vick's best days as a player are behind him. He is not an instinctive player and turns the ball over way too much in the red zone. Barkley has the tools to be a top NFL quarterback and my feeling is that he will be the starter in Philly before the season is six games old.

Barkley obviously has the extra cachet of being the first QB drafted under Chip Kelly. That said, Michael Vick is actually the first QB Kelly ever made the decision to sign and Nick Foles was the first QB that GM Howie Roseman drafted. So all the major contenders for the QB spot have some claim to the inside track.

However, speaking to Gabriel's reasoning here, I do wonder whether we'd see Chip Kelly pull the plug on a QB early in the season after holding an offseason long open competition. If Michael Vick was the QB, maybe that could happen because it makes some sense to close the book on him if he struggles and move on to a young guy. However, if Nick Foles is the starter, I feel like the team would owe him more than 4 or 5 games before pulling the plug.

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