Philadelphia Eagles News

Head Athletic Trainer Rick Burkholder

Opening Comments: "It's been a quick turnaround, we're only 13 hours from the time that (QB) Michael (Vick) got hurt, but I just wanted to give you guys a little bit of where we're at with him. As you know, (Eagles Head) Coach (Andy Reid) told you last night in the press conference he did have a concussion. We diagnosed that through our program in compliance with the NFL's guidelines. What we did was, as we talked to him on the sideline, we realized that he got his head whipped, so his neck was sore, he had bit his tongue, he had the blood. To me, he was pretty good, but we just wanted to make sure, so we took him inside, and we have a whole baseline of tests on all these guys, and he was just a little bit off, enough that we acted on the side of caution to hold him back as our standard protocol says.

"Last night on the plane, coach will tell you and I can tell you, we both met with him. Coach met with him in the locker room, I was with him on the airplane, he was absolutely fine last night. We have not seen him today yet, and that's part of our protocol that you guys know, rest is one of the most vital things we can give him, we don't try to tax his brain today or anything. He'll go through our protocol of the rehab process that I've outlined for you before; he'll see an independent neurologist, have impact testing, he'll have an MRI as part of our protocol, and we'll go from there. Right now, no he hasn't had impact testing, no he hasn't had an MRI, no we haven't checked his baseline again because I haven't seen him, I have him resting right now. As the days go on we'll see, but last night he was pretty good. He told coach he was fine, he told his teammates he was fine, he told me he was fine, and he was very far along last night."

On when testing will start: "I'm going to meet with him after this, try to get him in here and see, and if I think it's appropriate we'll get him at least the MRI today and then if he's as good as he was last night I'll start some of the impact testing. Impact is just a computer test. Depending on what kind of spirits he's in, mood he is in, I may send him over to see (Team Internist) Dr. (Gary) Dorshimer as a follow-up because Gary is the doctor who was taking care of him last night. There's a lot that needs to go on over the next three, four, five, seven days, but you know we have it outlined, and we've done that before, and this isn't our first go-round."

On whether it is fair to say that it is a certainty that Vick will not play next week: "I don't think that's fair to say. I think we'll take our guidelines as we take our guidelines. Like I said, we're 13 hours post-injury right now."

On what the typical timeline is to get all the testing done if Vick continues to do well: "Coach will tell you last night, I told him I can't give you timeframe on this. That's foolish on our part medically to put timeframe out there. Everybody wants to know timeframe, everybody wants to know whether Mike's going to play, everybody wants to know whether Mike's going to practice. We're going to go through out protocol and when Mike's ready to practice, I'm going to turn him over to coach and he's going to make a decision whether he's ready to play, had reps, all that kind of stuff. I keep emphasizing, we're 13 hours post-injury. There's a lot that's got to go on between now and then to make that decision, and for me to sit up here and guess on time it's not fair to Michael, it's not fair to coach, it's not fair to us, the NFL, anybody."

On how much is known 13 hours post-injury and how much is still out there to figure out: "There's a whole protocol to go through, and that's why we have it laid out so we're not guessing. That's why we have tests that we run, and all the protocol that we go through that we, the NFL and all the medical experts have put together, so there's a lot to do yet."

On how close he was to the baseline range that says it's not a concussion: "He was pretty close. He was pretty close. I'm not going to give you numbers, but he was pretty close. We had to make a medical decision with him. We made the right medical decision and we went with that. He was close."

On whether the best case scenario is several days: "Yeah, we have a protocol; we're going to follow it. I'm not going to be back up here tomorrow and tell you that he's cleared, that's for sure."

On whether Vick tried to go back into the game: "Listen, as much as we all think it's an exact science, and easy and everything, every one of these guys wants to play. We had a bunch of guys nicked up last night, every guy on that roster wanted to play last night including Michael Vick. That's when Dr. Dorshimer and I had to make a decision to figure out what was really going on and it's the way it was. Even after the game, coach can tell you, he felt like he could have finished the game, and pulled it out and all the stuff that Mike is as a competitor, that's what makes it very tough to handle these situations. That's the way it is. We don't have a guy on the roster that doesn't want to play."

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