PHILADELPHIA — A badly bruised hand isn’t going to keep Michael Vick off the field.
Vick practiced Wednesday and said there’s a “100 percent” chance he starts when the Philadelphia Eagles (1-2) host San Francisco (2-1) on Sunday.
The star quarterback was initially diagnosed with a broken, non-throwing hand after getting hurt in a 29-16 loss to the New York Giants three days ago. But tests on Monday revealed he had a contusion on his right hand.
“Even if it was broke, I think I would have probably padded it up and went back out there,” Vick said after a morning walkthrough. “You got to take precaution, but this is what I love to do.”
Vick hasn’t finished two of Philadelphia’s three games — both losses. He suffered a concussion in a 35-31 loss at Atlanta on Sept. 18.
“I just want to be there for my teammates and hold myself accountable for my responsibilities and what I have to do as a quarterback,” he said. “So regardless of what I have to go through, I just want to be there.”
Coach Andy Reid said he wants to make sure Vick can take snaps without any problems.
“Ball handling, obviously is very important, in particular under the center, that’s where the problem would be,” Reid said. “Shotgun, you can get away with it, but under the center you’ve got to be able to squeeze and right now that’s not 100-percent. So, we’ve got to see. I don’t know how fast it’ll come back. I can’t tell you that.”
Vick said he did everything at practice despite a little soreness.
“I’m very encouraged,” he said.
Vick again apologized for criticizing the officials and saying he takes too many late hits without getting the benefit of a roughing-the-passer penalty.
“I think I was frustrated because I got hit late and I hurt my hand on that play and I couldn’t finish the game because of that,” Vick said. “That was one of the reasons I was frustrated. I don’t want any special treatment. All I want to do is go out and play my game. If they feel there’s a need to make a call, then they’ll make it. If not, then I won’t say anything about it.”
Vick got a laugh out of the New York Post cover that had his face attached to a baby’s body wearing an Eagles bib and holding a bottle.
“My kids were killing me about that. That was a good one,” Vick said. “I guess when you sit on the podium and you make excuses like that, then you’re going to be labeled a crybaby, so maybe I did deserve it.”
Though still early, Vick and the Eagles find themselves in last place in the NFC East, as the Giants, Redskins and Cowboys are all 2-1.
Notes: The Eagles are making more changes at linebacker. After reshuffling all three of their starters last week, the Eagles have benched rookie Casey Matthews and replaced him with rookie Brian Rolle at the weak side. Matthews, a fourth-round pick, started the first two games in the middle before moving to the weak side. Rolle was a sixth-round pick out of Ohio State. “I guess the coaches felt the need for a new body in there,” Rolle said. “I just look forward to the challenge and I’m going to have fun and make plays. I’m ready for it. I felt like I was ready out of college.”… WR Jeremy Maclin missed practice with a hamstring injury and is day to day. … WR Riley Cooper was cleared after sustaining a concussion against the Giants, and practiced.