You guys asked a lot of good questions. I’ll cover as many as I can here. First, though…I heard ESPN analyst Trent Dilfer on the radio on Tuesday and he covered the Eagles QB situation. Trent said that he thinks Vick played more within the system back in 2010. He indicated that Vick was probably trying to still earn the coaches trust and was more likely to do exactly what they wanted. Dilfer then went off on a tangent where he talked about the fact that a lot of QBs stray from the scheme as they get more comfortable.
This all sounded odd to me. My perception is that Vick was going a lot off instinct back in 2010 and has struggled some in the last couple of years as he tried to play within the system. Dilfer watches a ton of tape on QBs so I respect his opinion. This isn’t Warren Sapp or Phil Simms just throwing a theory out there for the heck of it.
I do also think that the Vikings and Antoine Winfield gave the world a gameplan for how to attack Vick in that infamous Tuesday night game. That has had a huge impact on the past couple of seasons.
Dilfer did say that he is a huge fan of Nick Foles. Dilfer had him rated as a 1st round prospect. That got me to go look up some stuff. Here is a nice set of comments…from last December.
Foles, who rewrote the Arizona passing records and some in the conference, also earned praise recently from ESPN analyst Trent Dilfer via Twitter.
Dilfer wrote, after studying nine Arizona games, that he liked Foles’ college game tapes better than those from former Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford, who was the first overall pick in the 2010 draft. Dilfer on Foles: “Less arm, but equal accuracy & MUCH better instincts.”
Also from Dilfer: “Foles has as good of pocket instincts & climb as any SPREAD QB I have studied the past 10 years. Doesn’t lock on #1 & bail early.”
One more from Dilfer: He said he had “NEVER seen a QB this good get LESS help from his teammates. If Foles was in the SEC he would be a Heisman finalist.”
Trent certainly got my attention.
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Talk about CB-WR matchups. The Eagles have generally tried to put DRC on the fastest WR. He shadowed Torrey Smith in the BAL game. He spent most of the time on Mike Wallace in the PIT game. I know Nnamdi gave up the long TD to Jones on Sunday. Problem in that game is that both Jones and White have good speed. Jones is faster. I didn’t keep track of who was on who more. I did see Nnamdi covering both guys.
Do we overrate guys like DJax, Mac, Shady, Avant, and Celek? No, I don’t think so. Defensive coaches are scared to death of DeSean. That’s not a guess or my opinion. Coaches have specific gameplans to deal with his speed. Shady is a great RB. He hasn’t posted great numbers in the last few weeks, but he is a special player.
Avant is a good role player. Nothing more, nothing less.
Mac and Celek are good players, but they aren’t difference makers. I love Brent Celek to death, but he’s not a Top 10 TE. Guys like Gronk, Graham, Vern, Witten, Gates, Gonzo, etc are in a different class. Mac is the one player I have a hard time rating. He’s above average, but exactly how good is still up for discussion.
One part of my point that you may have overlooked is that you have to look at these guys as a whole. This is an outstanding set of skill players. That doesn’t mean they’re all great.
Is Vick still an elusive QB? Yes, absolutely. However, he’s not the guy he used to be. Think of him as a pitcher. He used to throw 99 mph. Now he’s down to 95-96. That’s still very good, but it isn’t the same. You can’t just throw it down the plate and blow guys away. You must adjust. I don’t know that Vick has fully adjusted for the decline in his skills.
As to the point about moving in the pocket…Vick has never been consistently good at that. Some QBs can move a foot or two and totally change a play. Vick isn’t like that. He goes way left or right or drops back further. He likes to operate in space, where he can run or throw. The pocket is all about congestion.
What is Vick’s future? Barring a great finish to 2012, he’s done as an Eagle. He’s due big money in 2013. The Eagles will pay it if they think he can play well enough to earn it. Right now, that seems like a longshot. I doubt the Eagles could deal him. He’s got a big contract and if he’s not good enough to stick here, I doubt another team would want to pay him mega-bucks.
I do expect Mike to be starting somewhere in 2013. He’s got some issues, but is talented and the coaches/players like him. He’s just struggling on the field. A new team would think he might work in their system and/or on their team.
Why can’t you sub QBs? Tom Landry did it with Dallas in 1970. He would have Craig Morton and Roger Staubach going in and out and in and out. Drove both of them crazy. The team didn’t care for it either. QB isn’t a normal position. It isn’t RB or WR or LB. The QB is the team’s leader. Must be one guy. Teammates need to know who to look to in crucial moments.
Any chance the Eagles deal for Bryant McKinnie? No way in heck. He’s not in good shape. He got benched for a reason…he’s not playing well enough. He also is a lousy fit for Mudd’s style of blocking.
I”m sure the Eagles will work the phones to see what they can come up with. Are there any good players to be had?
If Reid is fired, will he take a break from coaching? Maybe. If the Chargers can Norv Turner, which seems likely, I could see Big Red heading there ASAP. He’s a Cali guy. That would be a great change of scenery for him. Reid won’t take just any job. He’ll be picky about the team due to location and/or quality of job.
Should the Eagles have kept Asante and dealt Nnamdi? No. The Eagles wanted to play press coverage. They wanted the ability to be creative with the DBs. Asante hates to press. He wants to be only the LCB. Limits what you can do. Nnamdi has been disappointing. No one would dispute that. Could be his final year here.
Why haven’t the Eagles given Jamaal Jackson a shot? The Cowboys were desperate for OL help this summer and brought JamJax in for a workout. Apparently he looked bad and was out of shape. He battled to stay in shape back in 2008 and 2009. I can easily imagine where he’s just not ready to go. Plus, the Eagles really want fit OL. That really wasn’t JamJax on a good day, let alone in 2012.