Leave it to Mike Vick to defuse a quarterback controversy with unintentional swagger.
Vick, who has been nursing a badly pulled hamstring, was in rare form Thursday afternoon, smiling as he dragged Nick Foles up to the podium inside the media tent with him. Before even being prompted, Vick informed everyone that this would be a joint press conference.
"Starting a new ritual," Vick joked. "Ain't never had a tag-team press conference."
First question: Are you playing this week, Mike?
"Nah, I'm not playing. Not this week," Vick replied.
With the weeklong drama finally confirmed, the tone turned to one of mutual respect and admiration. Vick and Foles know what everyone is saying and thinking. Truth is, they don't really care. The two quarterbacks are friends, a relationship they take very seriously despite all the joking around.
"That's the most important thing throughout this whole thing, that we support each other no matter what is going on," Foles said. "I respect Mike with everything I have. I love Mike. We have a great relationship and we don't worry about that. We want to keep this friendship for as long as we live."
Then Foles, who isn't quite as experienced at being the mouthpiece for the team — perhaps awkward at times — deferred to Vick.
"I'm going to let Mike pick it up ..."
Vick confidently obliged.
"You can't have animosity towards a teammate because of the way he plays or because of what people want or how they feel," he said. "This game is not easy, so we're going to always try and root for each other and be there for each other. I love Nick and that friendship is always going to be there, and we're just going to try and win football games as a team."
Well, so much for a quarterback controversy. These guys legitimately like and respect each other. At one point, like when Foles credited Vick for inspiring his four-yard touchdown run last week, you half-expected a pillow fight to break out.
"I think I try to emulate his moves a little bit," Foles said. "I had a little rush for a touchdown last week, so that was because of watching him."
Vick interrupted before he even finished the compliment.
"That was all you," Vick said. "What people don't know is that Nick is very athletic. Things you don't see when we're out at practice is the way he moves around and it translates when he's out on the field."
On Sunday, Foles will look to lead the Eagles to a third straight win. If he succeeds, he'll be a member of a first-place football team, maybe the starting quarterback of a first-place football team — for the rest of this season and beyond.
"The future, the good Lord will take care of that," Foles said. "I don't worry about that. I just worry about what I control today, and I just live my life."