FanPost

My thoughts (upgraded from a comment!)

Let’s be honest, Vick is not going to win a Super Bowl on his own. Not now, not ever (unless he worked like this in his Atlanta days, then he would have had the athleticism and the ability to play QB). He’s not elite in the sense that Rodgers and Brees and Brady are. We don’t expect that from him.

As a QB, he doesn’t have the ability to carry a team for extended periods of time. He can win games, and he can put the team on his back for a game or two, but he won’t get the Eagles all the way. But then again, what elite QB has ever won a Super Bowl on his own? Brees won the year his defense stepped it up and forced turnovers, and they ran the ball effectively. Same thing goes for Manning. Brady won behind an elite defense and solid running game, and even in recent years, his offensive weapons are a major part of success.

A QB doesn’t win on his own. He wins games, but he needs the rest of the team to keep him in the game and make it winnable. Some QBs require less to win consistently, but they don’t win the Super Bowl without a team effort.

So the question becomes – is Vick good enough to win games when it counts, and not do stupid stuff to lose them? The answer is yes. He has a solid defense behind him, and an excellent running game (though it would be best for this team if it was used more). He’s shown the ability to win games, especially in the fourth quarter – he’s shown that intangible clutch trait that this team will call upon him to use at points.

The only issue – can he not lose games for us? The turnover issue is what’s holding him back right now. But there are positive signs there – he’s thrown fewer interceptions, and bad passes in general – in the last few weeks. The fumbles are the concern right now. On that, I think the two that were lost in this game were almost a little fluky, because he did have good ball security. The one on the goal line was a good play by the defender, though IIRC Vick hadn’t gotten his free hand around it by the time he got hit. We’ll have to watch to see if he can turn it around.

As for the rest of the offense? The running game is very solid when used, now especially out of the power-I. I’ll talk about play calling in a moment. The receiving options are all solid, and without a doubt above average. The line is troubling, but it will improve to some extent as the year goes on, and at least the coaching staff is starting to compensate for it.

Which brings me to my main point. Vick isn’t the sort of QB that’s elite in that he can lead his offense (which is the point I was trying to get at earlier, discussing elite QBs versus merely SB-caliber ones). Brady did it. Manning and Brees have done it. Even Rivers had to in 2010, though ST killed them that year. Vick needs the coaching staff to play conservatively with him, and not put too much on his plate. A strong running game puts less pressure on him to decipher and slice apart defenses. Think of Alex Smith in San Francisco, Matt Schaub in Houston. Vick is probably in that same category. Can be a good offensive player, but probably is not someone who can consistently put his team on his back and take on a huge workload in order to help the team win.

IMO the defense right now is still a little too inconsistent at times, but I trust them to get their act together eventually. So, if Marty and Andy can control their temptations and make sure not to overload Vick, and Vick can at least stop fumbling the ball (I know, big IF), this team will likely round into a dangerous Super Bowl contender by the end of the season. The Eagles are always a late-season team anyways.

As an aside, going 4-2 into the bye is huge. The Eagles really need this game, even against a Detroit Lions team even more desperate than the Steelers and also coming off their bye. If they win, they only need to go 6-4 after the bye against an easier schedule in order to get to 10-6, which is probably good for the division. If they win, 11-5 is a realistic possibility.

Go Birds!

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