As if being part of a backup quarterback competition wasn't enough, second year Philadelphia Eagles signal caller Matt Barkley now finds himself in a "battle" with a reporter. It all started with Philly.com's (and former BGN manager) Jimmy Kempski leading off with this paragraph in his Eagles minicamp practice notes from Wednesday.
Matt Barkley's arm strength is a major concern. He attempted to throw an out route that needed to be driven in there, and his pass lacked any kind of velocity at all. It had far too much air under it, and Curtis Marsh was able to jump in front of the intended receiver for an INT. I don't want to make too much of one throw, but if that was Barkley's maximum velocity, he's really going to struggle to stay in the league, in my opinion. You simply can't give opposing defensive backs that much time to break on a pass. Again, it's only June and there's a long way to go before the start of the season, but Barkley's play so far has been discouraging
I've noted that I'm not as down on Barkley as Kempski and others have been, but I can't disagree that he still has room for improvement. In any case, Kempski's article was posted to r/Eagles. Barkley just so happens to frequent Reddit and showed up to comment on Kempski's article. Here's what he originally wrote:
This comment caught the attention of Kempski and many others on Twitter. Realizing it may have come off too harsh, Barkley edited the comment to tone it down a little. Here's what it says now.
Easy there Jimmy, you don't know a thing about that route, the defensive coverage, technique of the wide receiver, the route he was actually running, let alone my maximum velocity arm strength.
We can play catch sometime if you want to figure out for yourself how hard I can throw it, just lemme know
Edit: Nothing personal, don't mean to spark a war, just letting you all know there is no concern with my arm strength :) Edit2: a few words....
Kempski fired back with his response:
My schedule is open.
(Unrelated to this story, Eagles offensive lineman Evan Mathis jumped in on the conversation to let Kempski know he went to the potty. The joke here is that Kempski has been keeping track of which Eagles players have been taking bathroom breaks during practice.)
One thing is clear: Kempski isn't shying away from Barkley's challenge. At the same time, Barkley has been known to get the best of people trolling/criticizing him. So will anything actually come of this? In the epic battle of Matt Barkley vs. Jimmy Kempski, who will win? Only time will tell, so stay tuned.