Bucs preparing for both Eagles QB, hoping for Vick
TAMPA -- The Bucs defense is preparing for the possibility of either Michael Vick or Nick Foles starting at quarterback for the Eagles on Sunday, but on a personal level, a few players are hoping for a long-awaited chance to face Vick.
"I respect him to the utmost, lowkey," linebacker Dekoda Watson said this week. "I'm not even going to be lowkey. I'm just going to be honest. He's one of my favorite players in the league. It's kind of like a bittersweet type thing. It's a business, so I'm going to go out and try to win, regardless."
Defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said he was excited about going up against Vick last season, only to see him injured and replaced by Foles, who threw for 381 yards and a touchdown pass as time expired to beat the Bucs.
"I hope Mike Vick hears this: He's done this to me the past two years," McCoy said Wednesday. "He gets hurt the week before I finally get to play against a guy I've been wanting to play against since I was a kid. So Vick, if you hear this, I don't like you. Not because I don't like you, but because you get hurt the week before I finally get to play against you. You're a great competitor and I would love to compete against you, but since you don't want to play, I'll talk about Nick Foles."
The perception is that facing Foles means the Bucs won't have to worry about Vick's scrambling ability, but McCoy said Foles was a problem running in last year's game, rushing for 27 yards and a touchdown.
"He is, I think, an underrated passer, underrated athlete," McCoy said. "He beat us a lot last year with his legs, his scrambling ability, and I think people underestimate his athletic ability because he plays next to a Mike Vick. But that guy's good. He beat us last year, so we know what he can do, and we have a tough test ahead of us."
Vick left last week's win against the Giants with a hamstring injury, and Foles threw two touchdowns in relief. Watson said he's seen Vick make unbelievable returns from injuries in the past, so he's not going to believe he's out for the week until he sees it Sunday.
"I'm not going to put a thing past Vick. I'm not going to sit here and listen to any of that stuff people are saying as far as him getting hurt," he said. "Lord knows he could have a broken hand and come out there the next day, ready to go."