Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick will wear a custom fitted Kevlar vest in yet another attempt to keep the oft-injured QB on the field in 2012. The vest was designed by Unequal Technologies, which also happens to be a company that Vick endorses.
Vick has had a history of rib injuries during his time with the Eagles. The most recent of those maladies came when Philadelphia played the New England Patriots in their second preseason game. On his sixth offensive snap, Vick was pummeled by linebacker Jermaine Cunningham just after unleashing a long pass. Thankfully for the Eagles and their fans, x-rays came back negative on the ribs.
Coach Andy Reid said after the game that the ribs were sore, but has been optimistic about Vick’s return for the regular season opener against the Cleveland Browns on Sept. 9. The talented quarterback was held out of the team’s third preseason game entirely. He has also been scratched from the final game this week, as Reid indicated that starters will not play, which is likely an effort to keep them all healthy for the regular season. It is doubtful that Vick would have played even if the first team got any time on the field.
This offseason has been filled with talk of whether the Eagles can keep Vick healthy because his style of play is conducive to injuries. The fact is that most of his recent injuries have not been a result of him getting hit while running–they have occurred while he was in the pocket. The addition of a custom-fitted Kevlar vest is a step in the right direction to keeping him healthy. His durability is going to remain in question, however, until he can complete an entire 16 game regular season without missing time due to injuries.
Vick is not going to change his style, but that does not guarantee he will get injured. He needs to play smart and realize that he is an integral part of this team that does them no good when he’s on the sideline in street clothes. He also needs to hope for a little bit of luck to stay injury free this year.