The best indicator of how well Michael Vick's hamstring was progressing last week was his being active for Week 6, despite not playing a down. The fact that the team was willing to activate him as the emergency quarterback suggests he was healthy enough that he could have stepped in if something had happened to Nick Foles.
Last week, Vick participated in practice daily, netting a full practice on what was one of the lightest workdays, but he was still out there on the field and not limited to strictly rehab work. Late in the week, Vick sounded positive about his readiness for Week 7, and if he were to ramp up his activity this week without incident, it would seem he should be ready to go by the time Sunday rolls around. But maybe ramping up is the problem. Vick acknowledged to reporters Tuesday that when he tries to "burst," he can still feel it in his leg. That signals a warning that his hamstring may not be ready for the type of demand Vick would likely place on it in a game situation. "I think another week of rehab can put me in position where I start gaining some confidence in it and doing things that I normally do," he added.
Coach Chip Kelly has not tipped his hand, saying only when speaking to reporters Monday that health would play a factor in deciding who starts under center this week. Kelly reiterated what we all know about the role Vick's running ability factors into his particular quarterback style. "Mike's legs are a big, important part of his game," Kelly said. "That's part of the decision in terms of putting the whole thing together, in terms of where he is and what he can do and what's his effectiveness."
On Tuesday, it was Foles taking first-team reps at practice. Offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur indicated that once both quarterbacks are considered healthy, Kelly will address the issue of who is going to start. "At this point," Schurmur said, "we'll go with Nick, and when Mike's healthy we'll have that discussion."
All hamstring injuries can be tricky in terms of identifying when the risk of reinjury is low enough to justify a return to play, setting up the scenario where the Eagles could make the case -- at least for another week -- of resting Vick for health reasons, even if they would simply prefer the idea of Foles at quarterback.