Is Michael Vick Better In Moderation?

Rich Schultz

The formula for Michael Vick supporters is a simple one- put Vick in a run first offense, have him throw it 20-25 times tops, and ask him to make only a few plays per game. The formula makes sense on the surface. If Vick isn't asked to make 60 decisions a game with the ball, he will cut down on mistakes.

Do the numbers support that tho?

I took a look at Michael Vick's career and tallied up his stats in games where he threw under 25 times, and games where he threw over 25 times. I excluded his rookie year and where he left early because of injury. I used ProFootballReference.com and tallied these myself. Here is what I found:

Vick attempted less than 25 passes:

Games: 40

Touchdowns: 42

Interceptions: 23

Vick attempted more than 25 passes:

Games: 56

Touchdowns: 78

Interceptions: 50

Now as with any stat, you can twist it anyway you want. Vick throwing more touchdowns and more interceptions in games where he throws it more makes sense- because he's, you know, throwing it more.

If you take these numbers and average them over a 16 game season, however, the argument for having Vick throw it less makes sense. What would Vick's numbers look like if he threw it over 25 times in each game next year, but played at the same level he did in the other 56 games where he did so? What about at less than 25 times? Here are some averages,

More Than 25: 22 touchdowns, 14 interceptions

Less Than 25: 17 touchdowns, 9 interceptions

Obviously either state line isn't great, but if Vick plays in all 16 games next year and only throws eight interceptions, Chip Kelly will be pretty happy- especially if the run game is working.

When it comes to wins and losses, however, Vick has clearly been more effective when he has thrown the ball less. According to ProFootball Reference, Vick is 28-27-1 when he throws the ball more than 25 times. When he throws it less than 25 times? 27-13.

It should be noted that while Vick attempted less than 25 passes in 38 games with Atlanta, and was 26-12 in those games. With the Eagles? Vick attempted less than 25 passes in games he started and finished just twice.

In limited playoff experience, Vick is 1-2 when he throws over 25 passes, and 1-1 when he throws less. He has two ouchdowns and three interceptions when he threw over 25 passes, and two touchdowns and one interception when he throws less than 25.

I wanted to show them to you guys and see what you thought of them. Do you think Vick is better in moderation?

Follow Eliot Shorr-Parks on Twitter on @EliotShorrParks

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