Eagles list Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy as out vs. Panthers

Posted: November 25, 2012

Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy were officially listed as out for Monday night's game, but only one may not ever play again for the Eagles.

Vick and McCoy, as expected, were not far enough in their return from concussions to be eligible to play against the Carolina Panthers. Rookies Nick Foles and Bryce Brown will start in their places at quarterback and running back.

Vick, who suffered his concussion a week before McCoy, on Nov. 11, was further along and in Phase 3 (more strenuous exercise) of the Eagles' five-phase protocol, team trainer Rick Burkholder said Saturday.

Burkholder said that Vick had no symptoms and that he expected him to be onto Phase 4 by Sunday, which would involve football activity and possibly throwing. Vick had not reached baseline in his latest Impact test, however.

"That's not alarming to us. It happens," Burkholder said. "He will not return to total football practice until I can get him to do a little better on that Impact test."

Vick must also be cleared by an independent neurologist and by team physician Gary Dorshimer before he can return. Burkholder said that Vick had yet to see an independent neurologist and cited the Thanksgiving holiday weekend as one reason for the delay.

Burkholder said Vick will be healthy before he plays.

But will Vick even play when healthy? Coach Andy Reid said Wednesday that Vick remained his starter, but that he wouldn't speculate beyond that until his quarterback was deemed healthy.

Still, with the playoffs a near impossibility and Reid's tenure here likely near its end, the coach may owe it to the organization to show what it has or doesn't have in Foles.

Vick likely will want the opportunity to play again. He's had two concussions in two seasons, and, with the Eagles unlikely to bring him back next year, he would want to show other teams that he is healthy.

Foles' struggles last week against the Washington Redskins lent credence to the argument that Vick's subpar play before his injury had as much to do with the offensive line and play-calling as it did with the quarterback.

Reid said that Foles, who has a 58.9 passer rating and four turnovers in a little more than six quarters, had a better week of practice.

McCoy, meanwhile, remained in Phase 1. Burkholder said that the running back still had symptoms - "a headache," "periodic dizziness with exertion," and "sleep issues." McCoy's Saturday Impact test was also below baseline, the Eagles trainer said.

McCoy suffered a concussion against the Redskins last Sunday. It was his first with the Eagles, Burkholder said.

Brown will make his first career start at running back, but Dion Lewis should also get his first carries of the season.

Extra points. Reid said that Danny Watkins (ankle), who was listed as probable, was improving, but that his condition was similar to last week, when Jake Scott started ahead of him at right guard. . . . Jason Avant (hamstring) was listed as out. Riley Cooper will be the Eagles' third receiver. . . . Reid said that Brandon Boykin would start out returning kicks. Brown returned kicks for the first time last week. . . . A day after he was signed off waivers from the Patriots, Greg Salas practiced. The Eagles cut Mardy Gilyard to make room for Salas. Reid said the second-year receiver Salas was a "good inside route runner."

Contact Jeff McLane at jmclane@phillynews.com, or follow on Twitter @Jeff_McLane.

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