Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I Disagree

I am continuing to sit here concerned about the Michael Vick experiment in Philadelphia. See this good piece from ESPN:

Vick has started games against the teams with the two worst pass defense DVOAs in the league last season: Detroit and Jacksonville. And neither has shown much to suggest improvement this season. For these sorts of teams, 270 yards and two touchdowns is an average performance, not a good one. And Vick has averaged 285 yards and 2.5 TDs per game -- slightly above average. But he also has had the league's 12th-best passing offense from a year ago to work with.

On Philly's first four drives, Vick tossed a 61-yard touchdown pass to DeSean Jackson but otherwise went 2-of-8 for 6 yards with a sack. After an effective two-minute drill to get an 11-point lead, Vick led two possessions that combined for seven plays by going 2-of-4 for 22 yards and a sack, with both completions coming on third-and-long and ending up short of the sticks, leading to punts. He was only particularly effective once he got the ball back again, with 5:30 left in the third quarter.
I’m not ungrateful; I enjoy the winning. And I realize no plan survives first contact. It is hard to pitch a stone rebuilding year in this “future can be now” weak division.

But as the blurb indicates, can we back off a little patting ourselves on the back over Michael Vick? And still be open to the idea that this is not the right move? Pulling the plug on a multi-year quarterback development project (Kevin Kolb) who had one bad half and de-emphasizing other rebuilding projects simply isn’t validated by wins over bad Jacksonville and Detroit outfits.

This change is a success only if:

1. The Eagles win the Super Bowl this year.
2. Or, going forward, Vick resigns after this season, wins a lot as the new franchise quarterback and forgoes trouble.

Even a one year deep play-off run doesn’t justify sacrificing an entire year of development time, if not also the asset of Kolb himself (I’d ask for a trade if I were him), if Vick takes this opportunity to market himself and leaves short of a Championship. The Eagles are very close to developing someone else’s asset over an asset they control for years (at a very good price).

Plus, am I the only who noticed the "amazing" Vick only completed 17 balls last week? That has been the knock against Vick from day one- he doesn't give you volume in the passing attack. The guy is way more likely to complete 14 passes or fewer than he is to complete 22 or more. Hard to win in this league with only 17-ish positive results from your passing game. And, as the note above says, that was against a pretty shabby Jacksonville defense surrounded by outstanding receiving targets.

Mark my words, if Vick starts thirteen more games, he will complete a fourteen or fewer balls in at least three of them. Those will be hard games to win- given the Eagles suspect running backs and offensive line.