Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Dissecting Vick: Week 3

This week's Dissecting Vick segment was a lot less enjoyable than last week. To be blunt, he wasn't good. As an optimist myself, it was hard to watch, hard to look at his performance so far this season and think he's a better quarterback than he was two years ago.

Let's start with the good:

- His completion to Damaris Johnson for a first down on the second series of the game was nice. He stood in the pocket and delivered a strong ball, even with a defender drilling him to the ground.

- In the second quarter, he had a really nice throw to DeSean Jackson that pushed the team to the one-yard line. DeSean found space right over the middle of the field and Vick got him the ball.

Quarterback Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles throws a pass during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 23, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. The Carindals defeated the Eagles 27-6.
I want the old Vick back. The confident
Vick, who knows he's one of the best
- He made a nice throw to Avant in really tight coverage. I don't understand why he doesn't utilize the reliability of Avant more often. He knows the receiver will battle anybody for the ball and put his body at risk.

- He stepped up in the pocket, evaded rushers and delivered a high ball to Avant, which he came down with. It was on second and really long, and almost resulted in a first down.

- In the 3rd quarter, he threw a good out-route to DeSean Jackson, which just got over the out-stretched arms of Patrick Peterson.

- Vick showed flashes of his ability to get the ball out at the beginning of the second half. Watch that on film, and grow.

- Well, that's it for the good. I added another bullet to make it look better.

Now let's focus on the bad:

- It honestly looked like Vick thought he was playing seven-on-seven with an unlimited sack clock. There were times when the receivers weren't getting very open, but as an NFL quarterback, you have to be able to make tight throws. Put the ball in places where only your receiver can get it, if it results in an incompletion, no harm done. He has to get rid of the football.

- When the Eagles offense approached the one-yard line with 16 seconds left and no timeouts, Marty designed a rollout for Vick with FB Stanley Havili as his primary option. Havili had a step, Vick couldn't pull the trigger. Watch the replay of that, if Vick goes to Havili early, the linebacker doesn't have an angle for the interception.

- The 93-yard fumble return TD was 100% Vick's fault. I don't want to hear anybody blaming Andy Reid or Marty Mornhinweg, or even the offensive line. If Vick points out the blitzer, S Kerry Rhodes, before the snap, LeSean McCoy (who went right to pass protect) would've picked him up on the left side. Not only was Vick oblivious to the defense, he held on to the ball way too long on a three-step drop. Arizona did a great job jamming Celek. Vick needs to throw that ball out of the endzone and go into halftime down 17-3, not 24-0. Unacceptable.

Daryl Washington - Philadelphia Eagles v Arizona Cardinals
Vick needs to secure the ball
when he evades the pocket
- Quarterbacks need internal clocks in their head, one second, two seconds, three seconds, out. Give me the best five offensive linemen in the NFL right now and they can't sustain pass protection for seven seconds against the Cards D-Line on every play. Come on.

- Vick ran the ball recklessly too. It is impossible to sustain backyard football week-after-week against NFL defenses. This isn't realistic, but he needs to learn to run responsibly; take the yards given, don't push the limits, and put two hands on the ball prior to contact. The fumble outside of the pocket was inexcusable.

- Another problem with Vick is quarterback savvy. The good, veteran quarterbacks now how to protect their receivers. Vick almost gave Celek two concussions on back-to-back plays. Luckily for Vick and the Eagles offense, Celek is a monster. He took two huge licks, one bomb from Kerry Rhodes. Vick can't put his receivers in danger, especially not his most reliable one.

- Along with the game-changing 93-yard TD Vick allowed, he was clueless against the Cardinals blitz most of the afternoon. On a couple play-action passes, defenders knifed right through untouched and delivered blows to Vick. This also might have been lack of run game. Why would the defense bite on play-action when the Eagles don't run the ball enough?

Mike Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles is nearly sacked by Daryl Washington #58 of the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium on September 23, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona.
Michael needs to get the ball
out before he takes this shot
- Even if Andy Reid and Vick won't admit it, Michael was gun-shy Sunday. He showed an overall lack of confidence. I would rather my QB go down confidently swinging than pulling back. He needs to deliver the ball with instinct and confidence, throw into tight windows. The best example I have of this is his completion to Clay Harbor last week on the final drive. It was a play action pass on second and long. The defense wasn't fooled and were in Vick's face pretty quickly. He didn't have time to think, he just instinctively delivered a beautiful ball to Harbor in tight coverage. I want to see that.

- Ken Whisenhunt had a perfect gameplan called against the Eagles defense. Using part of this, let's look at how Vick can improve as a passer. When the Cardinals saw off-man coverage, they delivered stick routes. Easy seven yards, every time. When the Cardinals faced two-man press, they utilized their tight-end with crossing routes and slants, they moved Fitzgerald around to get a more favorable matchup. I want Vick to understand the defense and exploit its weakness. If they blitz, just call a hot-route and get rid of the football. Live to fight another down. Positive yards will lead to opportunities for big plays. A strictly vertical passing game is much easier to defend than a diverse one.

One more note:

- I was really hard on Vick this week. This doesn't mean I'm downing our quarterback, this doesn't mean I don't believe in him anymore. There are high expectations for this team and he has to play better. He's still the man for the job. I truly feel sorry for the Giants defense, because I think he's going to pick it apart. Watch out for Michael Vick this week.

Follow me on Twitter @Matt_Chastain25 and @eaglesallday95, I'll get ya back.

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