The Washington Times-Herald

Columns

September 21, 2013

Vick not the right QB in Philly

WASHINGTON — In sports people hate new things, because it scares them. So often coaches and general managers want to keep doing the same thing over and over again, even if it continues to yield negative results. When a group of people come up with new ideas that challenge the construct of how things have been done for decades we get a “Old School” vs. “New School” debate where nobody wins.

In baseball, the sabermetrics community have revolted against batting average and RBIs and in the NBA, Memphis Grizzlies head coach Lionel Hollins lost his job because he wouldn’t conform to new executive John Hollinger’s new wave of statistics.

Enter Chip Kelly. Kelly’s Oregon offense has become legendary stuff in the college game, and New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick even visited Oregon last year to get pointers on how to run a hurry up offense in New England. The Patriots breakneck pace at times last year frustrated defenses with Tom Brady running the show. Kelly showed up in Philadelphia and the masses immediately assumed Michael Vick would become the perfect quarterback to run the Oregon high speed offense.

Thursday night’s putrid offensive display once again showed that Vick is nothing more than an average NFL quarterback at best, and anyone expecting more than that from him is just fooling themselves. Week 1’s Monday night victory over the Redskins was a perfect storm for Kelly. Robert Griffin III was still hobbled coming off offseason knee surgery and the Washington couldn’t get on track until it was too late. We now know the Washington defense leaves a lot to be desired. The Eagles scored 63 points in their first two weeks against two awful defenses in Washington and San Diego. When they finally ran into a legitimate defense we saw the result last night.

Vick was 13-for-30 passing for 201 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown. Yes, Vick ran for 95 yards, but 61 of those were on one play. He just isn’t the right quarterback to be running Kelly’s innovative offense which will make LeSean McCoy and Desean Jackson superstars in the coming years. Vick isn’t good enough or accurate enough to take the offense to the heights it could reach in the coming years. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit if Marcus Mariota, the current Oregon quarterback was lining up under center in Philadelphia next year.

Of course since Kelly came into the league with so much fan fare and zero NFL experience either as a coach or a player, he has received much resistance and criticism. He represents a difference of opinion with what NFL offenses have looked like for the past four decades. The Philadelphia offense is simply looking for an athletic quarterback who can make accurate throws and decisions to keep this fast-paced locomotive on the track. Unfortunately since the Eagles now sit at 1-2 after two straight losses, which will ultimately turn into 1-3 after next week’s trip to Denver, the reviews in the early going aren’t glowing.

Kelly’s offense will look great once it gets going with a quarterback who isn’t a turnover waiting to happen like Vick. With every interception Vick throws, the more he looks like such a waste of talent. His $100 million contract he received after his incredible 2010 season when he threw 21 touchdowns and just 6 interceptions and led the Eagles to the playoffs now looks like one of the biggest fluke quarterback seasons of all time. Since the beginning of the 2011 season (26) games, Vick has thrown 26 interceptions and has lost seven fumbles. For Kelly’s offense to succeed you need a quarterback that knows where the ball needs to go and how to get it there quickly.

Kelly’s offense isn’t a threat to conventional pocket passers, it’s just a different approach. Just because something is different doesn’t necessarily mean it’s wrong. If you like exciting football you have to applaud Kelly’s efforts. This isn’t to say pocket passers like Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are boring or a dying breed, but there are other options out there if that’s the direction a franchise wants to go.

Unfortunately for the Eagles players and coaches they are saddled with a quarterback who isn’t capable of helping the offense reach it’s full potential. Until the time comes when No. 7 is no longer under center the high-powered locomotive will be stuck in neutral.

1
Text Only
Columns
  • Learning from the examples of Jesus I was reminded again on Thursday night at our church's Maundy Thursday service about humility and obedience. As part of the traditional service, we not only take part in communion, but have a foot-washing service. On the evening before his death, Jes

    April 19, 2014

  • The past is prologue When I left Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Saturday, I watched a lot Barr-Reeve leave depressed and disappointed. The Vikings had lost a heartbreaking Class A final and I think a lot of people were wondering how and why. I'm not sure if either question n

    April 1, 2014

  • A Viking team to remember All roads lead to where you stand. And today, the Barr-Reeve basketball team will find themselves at center court of the Class A State Finals. Whether they win or lose is now irrelevant, as their legacy has already been written. This team will be rem

    March 29, 2014

  • Those hard working worms When the word "worm" comes up in conversations, there is often a wide range of ideas as to what people think about worms. Someone may think of a worm as a creepy, crawly thing that wiggles around in the earth, that young boys used to tease young gir

    March 25, 2014

  • Long live the Big East It first started when I was a student at Indiana University in Bloomington and I didn't quite understand. Most of my friends and people I would meet while watching college basketball wondering how on earth I couldn't be a crazed Hoosier fan, despite

    March 22, 2014

  • Twigs give Leatherwood its name One of our lesser known Indiana shrubs also has a rather unusual name. This is the leatherwood. A usually short shrub, it only grows to a height of around six feet, leatherwood receives its name from the soft leather-like twigs that extend out from t

    March 18, 2014

  • 'Old-school' sharing found in different ways The concept of sharing has taken on a new meaning since I was supposed to have learned it many years ago. What we all know, or supposed to be taught, was to let others take part in your good fortunes. When we all learned about sharing, it was over ou

    March 15, 2014

  • How far was Hooterville from Walton's Mountain? I have always said that television is the one item that binds my generation together (the generation that still watches televison, talks on phone and asks people for directions instead of using one device for all three). And with that in mind, it ma

    March 8, 2014

  • Time to seed the state tournament

    The Indiana boys basketball state tournament got underway Tuesday night as the most exciting month in high school began. As the old saying goes, "In 49 other states, it's just basketball, but this is Indiana." With that in mind, the IHSAA needs to to take a long look at seeding the state tournament.

    March 7, 2014

  • The pen is mightier than the sibling GD (Grand Dad) came to town for a visit recently and before he left I heard him ask Ava if she would to write something for his newspaper back home. She said she would but I could tell by the look on her face that she didn't really want to. She was p

    March 6, 2014