After a stellar 2013 season for Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles, he finally was awarded to position of starting quarterback for the Eagles. Meanwhile over in New York, former New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez had just lost his starting job to Jets quarterback Geno Smith due to injury. Now Sanchez is a washed up backup and has found his way onto the Eagles as Nick Foles’ backup. Or so we thought, but while Nick Foles has been struggling Sanchez has been fighting for the starting job, could he make a serious push?
In the first preseason game of the year for the Eagles, where they played the Chicago Bears Nick Foles struggled. His passing statistics were 6/9 with 44 yards and 2 interceptions. He tied his interception total from the previous year in one game. Meanwhile Sanchez’s stats were different, 7/10 for 79 yards and no interceptions. Yes, Sanchez was playing an easier defense, but his throws were much more on target than Nick Foles.
I attended Eagles practice recently, it was there that I watched the two very carefully as they went through their drills. I must say, I was very worried when I watched Nick Foles, he was throwing high, and he was throwing behind his receivers. Meanwhile Sanchez was perfectly on target. One time where I saw Foles shine over Sanchez was the drill that focused on having the quarterback throw on the run, Foles was incredible he hit his guys right on target and he didn’t just throw it, he drilled them with the ball, he had a lot of power. On a team including running backs Darren Sproles and LeSean McCoy, this short ranged accuracy could be useful especially if the pocket collapses. Another drill where Foles outshined Sanchez was a red zone simulation. Foles was able to perfectly place the ball in the back corners of the end zone over his target’s (tight end Brent Celek) shoulder and into his hands, while Sanchez over threw his target (tight end Zach Ertz).
Other than those two drills, Sanchez was much more on target, he led his receivers well, and he was able to read the defense well, throwing through the coverage. While Foles didn’t have any interceptions in practice, he did have a couple of his passes knocked down by opposing defenders.
I hope that Foles figures out how to return to his 2013 form soon, because the Eagles are relying on him so they can. Based on his performance so far, I could see Sanchez getting a shot at the job by the end of the season. So look out Nick Foles, you may not be as safe as you think.