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keeponbucn

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: November 21, 2006, 06:34:53 PM

Nothing new here but a great read anyway......

A lack of passing has Falcons failing

By Charean Williams
Star-Telegram Staff Writer


The Atlanta Falcons have a big problem. His name is Michael Vick.

The Falcons are married to Vick, having given him a 10-year, $130 million contract, including a $37 million signing bonus, that made him the highest-paid player in the NFL two years ago. It basically is a "lifetime" contract.

But while Vick is the most exciting player in the NFL, he isn't one of the league's top quarterbacks. He might not even be the best quarterback on his team.

Former NFL head coach Jim Mora, the father of the Falcons coach of the same name, called Vick a "coach killer," according to an ESPN report.

The Falcons, though, are stuck with Vick.

Backup Matt Schaub has started only two games in three seasons, but even the Falcons believe he could be the next Tony Romo.

Schaub is a restricted free agent in the off-season and becomes an unrestricted free agent in 2008. He will be pursued as a starting quarterback for some other team, though he fits the Falcons' West Coast offense better than Vick.

It is reminiscent of 1992 when the Falcons picked Chris Miller over Brett Favre, trading Favre to the Packers. The rest is NFL history.

Atlanta can't afford to bench Vick, trade Vick or cut Vick.

And while Vick will sell a lot of No. 7 jerseys for the Falcons and will represent them in a lot more Pro Bowls, he isn't ever going to win them a championship.

In 2004, the Falcons reached the NFC Championship Game with Vick. They had the top-rated rushing offense that season, but the 30th-ranked passing offense. In the NFC title game, the Philadelphia Eagles forced Vick to pass. He completed 11 of 24 attempts for 136 yards with one interception and four sacks in a lopsided 27-10 loss.

That's about as good as it's ever going to get for Atlanta with Vick.

As Vince Young is discovering, quarterbacks have to be able to pass consistently to win consistently in the NFL. And Vick isn't a consistent passer. He never has been, and he never will be.

He has his moments, like the back-to-back games he put together in beating Pittsburgh and Cincinnati this season. He completed 65 percent of his passes in those two games for 523 yards with seven touchdowns and two interceptions. Not surprisingly, the Falcons won both.

But since then, in losses to Detroit, Cleveland and Baltimore, Vick has completed only 47 percent of his passes for 487 yards with three touchdowns and four interceptions.

"People want me to get up here every week and say that Michael Vick is the problem, and I'm not going to do it," Falcons coach Jim Mora Jr. told reporters Sunday.

But we're talking about a quarterback who has a career completion percentage of 53.8, including 52.4 percent this season. Through 10 weeks, the NFL average was 59.7 percent.

Vick is in his sixth season. It isn't like he is going to morph into Peyton Manning. He remains more comfortable on the run than he is in the pocket, and at 26, Vick isn't going to be able to rely on his legs many more years.

Thus, the problem for the Falcons.

They started 6-2 last season before going 2-6 to finish 8-8. They started 5-2 this season, but have lost three in a row.

With Vick as its quarterback, Atlanta seems to be going nowhere fast.


escobar

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#1 : November 21, 2006, 06:38:03 PM

It's hilarious that this keeps coming up every single season. How dumb can the franchise be to continue to start the guy. It is clear he will never be a quality QB, either move him to RB or stop talking about the guy, it's getting ridiculous.

naplesbuc

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#2 : November 21, 2006, 06:47:48 PM

How dumb can the franchise be to continue to start the guy.

You can hardly afford not to start him given how much he's being paid.  Even more puzzling is signing away your franchise to Vick for the next 10 years. 

finnbluebucs

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#3 : November 21, 2006, 06:49:03 PM

Nothing new here then. Vick still cant pass even though his performance vs the Steelers was meant to be on a par with the Resurrection of Jesus.

\"We are frustrated at not making the playoffs. It is a good start. That is all it is. It is a good start for something that we are going to be in the future. - Josh Freeman

keeponbucn

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#4 : November 21, 2006, 06:50:16 PM

even though his performance vs the Steelers was meant to be on a par with the Resurrection of Jesus.


funniest thing I've seen on the board in a long time!! Well played!

leeroybuc93

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#5 : November 21, 2006, 08:45:47 PM

How dumb can the franchise be to continue to start the guy.

You can hardly afford not to start him given how much he's being paid. Even more puzzling is signing away your franchise to Vick for the next 10 years.

Wasn't it McKay who signed him to that deal?  He should move to the NBA where it's much more acceptable, and often more succesful, to pay a guy for potential instead of production.  He signed Booger to a big deal for what he thought he was going to do, and now he's done the same thing to an even larger extent in Atlanta.

stereochemistry

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#6 : November 21, 2006, 10:51:55 PM

How dumb can the franchise be to continue to start the guy.

You can hardly afford not to start him given how much he's being paid. Even more puzzling is signing away your franchise to Vick for the next 10 years.

Wasn't it McKay who signed him to that deal?  He should move to the NBA where it's much more acceptable, and often more succesful, to pay a guy for potential instead of production.  He signed Booger to a big deal for what he thought he was going to do, and now he's done the same thing to an even larger extent in Atlanta.

And would anyone be surprised to see McKay move on in say, oh...year 6 or 7 of that 10 year contract?  After it's been restructured and pushed to the back end a few times, of course  ;D

My money was on him getting the commish job and leaving in plenty of time before the contracts choked the Falcons, but apparently the rest of the league owners hated McKay as much as he hated Gruden.

DanTurksGhost

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#7 : November 22, 2006, 10:37:11 AM

He can only get better!

Oh wait, maybe he can't.

DanTurksGhost

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#8 : November 22, 2006, 10:48:15 AM

They're so similar, does this mean that Gradkowski is now the most exciting man in the NFL?

He is the most exciting bald-headed QB in the NFC South.

alldaway

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#9 : November 22, 2006, 11:11:39 AM

It means that Grads is a "few" million dollars cheaper.  :D :D :D

DeadmenTNT

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#10 : November 22, 2006, 12:05:31 PM

"Flare ups", "hot and bothered", "outbreak". LMAO.

Well played, dalbuc!. (golfclap)

Moss looked to have a lifetime contract, but the Vikings bit that bullet. Could happen to Vick as well somewhere down the road.




Doctor StrangeJosh or How I Stopped Caring About Completion Pct and Learned to Love the Bomb - J C DeLatorre



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#11 : November 22, 2006, 12:20:51 PM

Reading that article brings a smile to my face.

alldaway

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#12 : November 22, 2006, 12:28:04 PM

Reading that article brings a smile to my face.

I agree.  This is my favorite part of the article.

Quote
a $37 million signing bonus

DanTurksGhost

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#13 : November 22, 2006, 12:59:15 PM

The McKay legend grows.
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