Michael Vick is just happy to be here.
The Philadelphia Eagles quarterback laid claim to the starting job in Thursday night's 14-9 win over the Carolina Panthers. Vick looked comfortable operating Chip Kelly's offense, completing 9 of 10 passes for 105 yards and rushing for another 20 yards on two carries.
To the common eye, Vick appeared rejuvenated.
"I'm having fun playing football," Vick told NFL.com's Aditi Kinkhabwala after the win. "I fell in love with the game again. I thank Coach Kelly for getting me back to that point."
Vick fizzled out last season under former Eagles coach Andy Reid. When the oft-brittle passer wasn't sidelined by injury, he was the focal point of a sluggish Eagles offense that couldn't get out of its own way.
"Like I said, the last two years were tough. And you try to find yourself in the game of football. It's a tough game, it's gritty," Vick said. "It can be great and glorified when everything is going well, but when it's not, you've still got to live in it and deal with it.
"And I think this year, within this offense, taught me how to prepare myself again and how to gain that confidence. How to approach the game because it all starts with your belief and your faith. I know I can get it done. I know I'm one of the best in this league."
Kelly has given us hints of what's to come on offense. His up-tempo attack has been sprinkled with vestiges of the Oregon offense that fried college opponents in recent years. The Eagles' game film is worth a second and third look, and I recommend reading Chris Brown's sensational analysis about what Kelly and Vick are doing in Philly.
It's going to be something to watch this season, and it's not hard to imagine why Vick is having fun again.The Around The League Podcast is now available on iTunes! Click here to listen and subscribe.