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Update On Vick, McCoy

Posted Nov 30, 2012

It has become a weekly staple in the media schedule. Call it Fridays With Rick.

In this case, Rick is Rick Burkholder, the Eagles' head athletic trainer, and on each of the last three Fridays he has taken time to speak to the media to update the status of quarterback Michael Vick along with running back LeSean McCoy as they recover from their respective concussions.

Burkholder reported progress for McCoy, who is now in Phase 2 of his five-phase recovery process and who is nearly clear of all symptoms from the concussion he sufferred at FedEx Field against the Redskins two games ago.

As for Vick, Burholder used the word "plateau" to describe the quarterback's status. Vick remains in Phase 4 of his recovery and on Friday did not pass his latest imPACT test, used to determine if Vick's neurological signs have returned to their baseline levels.

Vick could take another imPACT test on Monday.

"Michael has hit a plateau in his rehab," said Burkholder, who said that reports of Vick "regressing" in his recovery were not true. "Michael got symptoms in Phase 4."

Burkholder said the symptoms had to do with his eye movement, visual tracking and his balance centers. Burkholder said that rehab to those areas should provide improvement in Monday's imPACT test.

Vick has been able to get his heart rate up to 80 percent of its maximum and Burkholder said Vick was in "pretty good shape."

The other related story floating in the media on Friday was one suggesting that the Eagles are interesting in keeping Vick sidelined so that they can see more from rookie quarterback Nick Foles.

"There's no conspiracy here. We don't grade the imPACT test, (on) which he has not gotten back to baseline. I send that paper from the computer off to the people in Pittsburgh (league concussion experts who grade the test) and they come back and say, 'He has not passed baseline.' That's an NFL rule. That has nothing to do with anything with us," said Burkholder. "He's got to pass that test before we can ever entertain the fact of him playing.

"I don't know where that came from. There is no conspiracy theory. As the gatekeeper of these guys, he's not going to play until he gets past baseline and gets through the five phase. He's in phase 4."

Burkholder said that Vick had three consecutive tests where he had the same reaction time, which Burkholder termed "unusual." The head athletic trainer was able to determine that Vick's eye tracking was the reason for the plateau, and he looks forward to more positive results if Vick takes the imPACT test on Monday.

Nick Foles makes his third consecutive start on Sunday night when the Eagles play at Dallas (8:20 p.m., NBC). With McCoy out, Bryce Brown starts again after his big night against Carolina on Monday.

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