It turns out Michael Vick can still play.... In fact, he might even be better than he ever was before. Vick has been electric the first two weeks of the season.
Vick showed that he's still got a lot of miles left on those legs of his in week one against Green Bay. After Kevin Kolb was knocked out of the game at half time, Vick came in and lit everyone up: He was 16-24 for 175 yards with a touchdown and ran the 11 times for 103 yards, and he did this in 2 quarters worth of work.
More importantly, Vick brought a stagnant Eagles offense back to life and almost led them to a comeback victory over a very talented Green Bay Packers team.
Vick got his first start in four years in week two against the Lions, and he made the most of it. He went 21-34 for 284 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-32 victory over Detroit. Vick proved that he could be a productive pocket passer using his legs to avoid sacks and finding open receivers down field.
Head Coach Andy Reid has already announced that he is sticking with Kevin Kolb as his starting quarterback, and Vick said all the right things when he was asked about it.
Here are the 5 reasons Mike Vick should start and the 1 reason he won't.
I know that Michael Vick just took his first snap as a starting quarterback in four years this past Sunday, but he is still far and away the most experienced quarterback that the Eagles have.
In Kevin Kolb's four year career he has started 3 games. Yep, that's it, 3 games (and he got hurt in his third start). Michael Vick has played in 3 Pro Bowls.
Vick has a 38-28-1 record as a starting quarterback in the NFL. He has led his teams to the playoffs twice in his career, and he won playoff games in both years that he went. In his playoff debut he beat Brett Favre at Lambeau....Enough said.
Yes, a lot of Michael Vick's accomplishments came many years ago, but you can't take any of that away from him. Vick appears to have the same skill set that he possessed years ago; only now he might be a smarter player.
The Eagles have been a pretty good football team for the last ten years. And who did they have at quarterback until this year? Donovan McNabb.
McNabb was a great quarterback in his days with the Eagles; he's one of the greatest players in the history of the franchise. So what does McNabb have to do with Vick you ask?
Vick has looked a lot like McNabb used to in his younger days before all the injuries; back when McNabb could use his legs to create plays.
Vick is now 30 years old, and it appears that he has dedicated himself to being a pocket passer. He's not the 25 year old guy who relied on his legs to make all the plays. We saw last week in Detroit that Vick could stand in the pocket and make throws down field, and in moments when you thought he would take off and run, he didn't. He remained composed and found the open guy down field; he only used his legs when it was absolutely necessary.
Vick has a similar skill set to that of Donovan McNabb and could run the offense in the same effective way that McNabb did for so many years.
Whenever Michael Vick is brought up in conversation someone always mentions the dog fighting scandal. I get it, he fought dogs, and he did his time for it. Vick has paid his debt to society and he appears to have learned a lot from the experience. He'd be the first guy to tell you what he did was wrong, so can we all just forgive him now? Moving on......
Michael Vick is one of the most (if not the most) exciting players in the NFL. There is no one else in the league that plays the quarterback position like Vick does. He just flat out looks smooth when he plays. From the way he cocks his arm back when he's getting to unleash a bullet, to the way he carries the ball (he never tucks it) when runs by everyone on a broken play.
Vick is a human highlight film, and he has been since his days at Virginia Tech. Who likes football highlights? Everybody.
Michael Vick is more dedicated to football than he has at any other point in his life. Early in his career he had it all. He was the number one pick, the highest paid player, on the cover of video games, had all the Nike commercials, and he was even the face of the NFL for a while.
Vick admitted that he took all of these things for granted when he was younger. He didn't study film, he was the last one to practice, and the first to leave. He strictly relied on his God given ability to get by on the football field.
Then one day he had everything taken away. Vick was convicted of running an illegal dog fighting ring and sentenced to 21 months in prison. He had to file for bankruptcy, and everyone that once loved him now despised him.
I'm sure sitting in a prison cell for 21 months had a profound effect on his life. Vick had to start all over again from nothing. He had to repair his image and prove to everyone that he had indeed made the changes in his life that he needed too.
Upon his return to football he was not going to be handed anything. Vick would sign with the Eagles to be their third string quarterback and didn't see very much time in his first season there, but it was during that time he realized how blessed he had once been.
If Vick ever wanted to get back onto the field as a starter then he was going to have work harder than he ever had before. Vick was going to have to take extra reps, run more sprints, and watch more film if he ever wanted to get back to being the player that he once was. It appears that he has put in the extra work.
Vick's play the last two weeks speaks for itself. Through two games he has thrown for 459 yards on 37-58 with 3 TD's and has a quarterback rating of 105.5 (good for fourth in the league). Those are pretty impressive numbers, but they don't do Vick justice.
The Eagles look inspired when Michael Vick is on the field, they are genuinely excited to play with him. Every guy on that team is pulling for him and wants him to succeed, he's the guy that everyone rallies behind.
What's been even more impressive is how Vick has handled all this. He's been the consummate teammate throughout all of this. It would have been very easy for him to tell the media that he believes he should be the starting quarterback, and they've tried to bait him into saying it, but he hasn't.
He's taken the higher road and showed his full support for Kevin Kolb, saying that "Kevin is are leader," and "I know how good he is, and what he can do." His actions show that he is team first player.
There is only one reason Mike Vick won't be the starting for the Eagles the rest of the season, and that's Kevin Kolb's contract. The Eagles signed Kolb to a one-year extension worth $12.25 million on keeping him under contract with the Eagles through the 2011 season.
The Eagles had so much confidence in Kevin Kolb's ability that they traded Donovan McNabb within the division to the Washington Redskins. There has got to be a lot of pressure on Andy Reid and the Eagles organization to play Kolb and make sure they get their money's worth. If they don't play him, then why would you pay him so much and trade McNabb? That just wouldn't make sense.
So the job is going to be Kevin Kolb's for the foreseeable future; he's the guy they planned on building the team around. Two great games from Vick was never going to change that..... But Vick will be a starter in this league again at some point. He's proved he can play.