It was a familiar sight last Saturday Night. A few times when protection broke down and the Jacksonville Jaguars brought an all out blitz, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick reverted back to some of his old ways, making poor decisions and what should have been simple throwaways.
On one throw in particular that he got away with, Vick had already been sacked and brought to the ground yet he still tried to fling the ball in the air despite the play having no chance. Luckily he was ruled down. Some of these mistakes are unacceptable for the veteran Vick. It is nice that he can complete balls when having time back there and seeing little pressure.
The real challenge comes when the pressure is in his face and he has to adjust. How does he respond then? Judging by Saturday night not well. Besides limiting damage to his body in this read-option offense, Vick has to recognize a blitz and make the proper adjustments. It is something he has struggled with for much of his career.
If Vick can learn how to defeat the blitz obviously he can be a real weapon, but until then sending extra men at the quarterback makes the super talented Vick look very pedestrian.
Vick may have had a bit of a long leash with former head coach Andy Reid. Chip Kelly, however, will exhibit no such patience. Durability and taking care of the football are Kelly’s two most important factors in being a successful quarterback in his offense. Frankly, Vick has struggled with both most of his career. If Vick has multiple outings where he turns the football over and struggles to make good decisions Kelly may be forced to go with the younger Nick Foles.
This was strike one for Vick. Let’s hope it doesn’t get to strikes two and three.