The world watched The Maturation of Vince Young, Football Player chapter by chapter last season after Fisher handed him the reins of an 0-6 team at the prodding of owner Bud Adams, who has a special place in his elderly heart for his Houston born-and-bred QB. Suddenly, Young, who had prepared in the '08 offseason to backup Kerry Collins and further learn the position, was given a winless team to command. The situation in itself was a softball tossed slow and easy to VY critics, assuredly awaiting shakey Young play. To stick with baseball metaphors for a moment, when VY and all his baggage from the past two seasons were asked to make something of an 0-6 team, it was a cutting fast ball hurled right at Young's earhole.
VY knocked the cover off the thing.
Young, a kid who was benched his second season and sucked into a whirlwind of questions about his inability to lead an NFL team, stepped up last season as a fourth-year full grown man. He won games, he broke records, he thrilled crowds, and with steel-steeped nerves went 8-2 as the mid-stream starter, including a game winning TD laser to Kenny Britt in the end zone to upset the Arizona Cardinals with 00:00 on the clock.
“That’s how he was at the University of Texas. National Championship game, game on the line and he’s back there joking around and laughing," FB Ahmad Hall told Nashville's The City Paper in November during Young's resurrection of a once dead offense. Hall is entering his eighth season sharing collegiate and NFL huddle time with Young. "That’s just how Vince does it. He likes to keep the huddle loose and keep guys motivated. That’s just his style of play."
Team officials hope Young's "style of play" off-the-field doesn't become a distraction. The quarterback apologized to his team for a recent incident involving assault charges at a strip club where Young says he was provoked. The security footage of the fight seems to back up Young's claim. It certainly wasn't a scene from "Big Fan," and Young certainly doesn't have the long standing soiled reputation of a Ben Rothelisberger. Fisher says he doesn't think the Young incident will be an issue henceforth, and is ever confident about Young on the field, as well.
"It was said over and over and over again: 'Vince, you know, he ran through college defenses week after week after week, well, guess what? NFL defenses are a lot faster'." Fisher said, mimicking Young's detractors. "They're a lot better. He's not going to do that at this level.' Well, guess what? He is."