Vince Young: Eagles QB Proves He Can Be Starter Again in Win over Giants

Cody SwartzSenior Writer INovember 22, 2011

Vince Young: Eagles QB Proves He Can Be Starter Again in Win over Giants

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    Vince Young’s start Sunday night against the New York Giants proved ultimately that he can still be a starter in the NFL.

    Young’s numbers were lacking, but the end result was a win, and it came when the Philadelphia Eagles had their backs against the wall. Young showed the league he can still be an effective QB, and in the long run, this may turn out to be the game that resurrected Young’s career.

    Michael Vick may return for the Thanksgiving Sunday game against the New England Patriots, but now the Eagles know they have a very capable backup quarterback in Young. The following reasons dictate why Young can still start football games.

He Manages the Offense

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    Vince Young’s stats for Sunday night’s game certainly weren’t great (23-of-36 for 258 yards, 2 TD, 3 INT) but he wasn’t there to lead an explosive scoring output.

    He was there to just manage the Eagles offense, and that’s what he did. He began the day shaky, but considering the circumstances, he did extremely well.

    It was Young’s first real taste of action in a calendar year. He didn’t have Jeremy Maclin for the game. He was facing a tough New York Giants defense that had the Giants in first place in the NFC East. And he was doing this all with the Eagles’ season on the line.

He Makes Plays on the Ground

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    Vince Young didn’t run wild in Sunday’s game against the New York Giants, but he is one of the more dangerous quarterbacks in the league with his legs.

    Young ran for 552 yards and a then rookie record seven touchdowns back in 2006. He has 12 rushing touchdowns in 57 games. Considering he’s not the league’s most precise passer, his ability to run make him a much more effective quarterback.

He Generates Fourth-Quarter Comebacks

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    For 49 minutes Sunday night, Vince Young was a mediocre quarterback, struggling to put points on the board.

    For the final 11 minutes, he was flawless.

    Young went 8-of-10 for 69 yards and a touchdown in the fourth quarter, leading the Philadelphia Eagles on an 18-play, 80-yard scoring drive that took up nearly nine minutes of game time. He converted an amazing six third-down conversions on the drive before throwing an eight-yard touchdown pass to Riley Cooper that proved to be the game-winner.

    In 48 starts as a quarterback, Young has engineered 12 game-winning drives. To put that in perspective, Aaron Rodgers—arguably the best player in the game—had five in his first 48 starts.

He Wins Football Games

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    I’m not a fan of the adage, "He just wins football games." Let me tell you though, Vince Young just wins football games.

    Say what you want about his completion percentage, his yards per attempt, or his poor touchdown to interception ratio, but VY wins football games. He is 31-17 as a starter in his career.

    In 2006, he led the Tennessee Titans to six consecutive late-season wins, five of those by one score. In 2009, he took over for Kerry Collins and led the Titans to eight wins in his 10 starts. Now, he’s undefeated in his lone start as a Philadelphia Eagle, and he has to have the team feeling more comfortable about letting Michael Vick fully heal.

He’s a Natural Leader

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    Quarterback is the most important position on the field, arguably in all of sports. Vince Young has the personality for the role.

    He is a natural-born leader. Young’s game Sunday night proved it. The Philadelphia Eagles had just let up a demoralizing touchdown drive to the New York Giants early in the fourth quarter that tied the game. This threatened to be another blown fourth-quarter lead for the Eagles, one that would be the NFL record sixth.

    Young didn’t allow it though. He backed up his Dream Team comments and took the team 80 yards in a time-consuming drive and ultimately walked away with a win.

He’s Still in the Prime of His Career

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    Vince Young had an up-and-down career with the Tennessee Titans, leading to his eventual departure after 2010. He signed with the Philadelphia Eagles for a one-year deal as Michael Vick’s backup, but make no mistake, Young is still in the prime of his career.

    He’s just 28 years old with little wear and tear on him. His 48 starts are equivalent to just three full seasons’ worth of games. He came to Philly to resurrect his career the same way Andy Reid saved Michael Vick’s career.

    His one-year deal means he will be a free agent after the season, and he will almost assuredly get a new deal with a team in need of a quarterback. The Miami Dolphins, Washington Redskins, Seattle Seahawks, and Cleveland Browns are all teams that could vie for Young if they don’t select a quarterback in the draft.