Pro Football Talk wrote: VICK SPIN MACHINE CONTINUES TO CHURN
In the wake of the Falcons' decision to demote former starting receiver Dez White to the bottom of the depth chart, league insiders are saying that it's just the latest example of the in-house efforts to excuse quarterback Michael Vick's flaws by placing blame on other players.
As one league source told us, "Mora can promote every f--king receiver he wants, and he can go back in time to get Raymond Berry, Jerry Rice, Lynn Swann, and Steve Largent. It wouldn't matter. Vick still sucks at throwing the football consistently. All they are doing down there is making more excuses for the fact that he just isn't that good of a passer."
As another league insider put it: "Coaches and front office people do funny things when they don't want to admit that a player isn't what they figured he would be."
On Thursday, Falcons coach Jim Mora did another "funny thing" when asked by a New York reporter about Vick's progress as a "quarterback, per se."
"What do you mean, 'per se?'" Mora said, according to The New York Daily News. "In the mold of Peyton Manning or in the mold of Mike Vick? Because, in the mold of Mike Vick, he's outstanding. I think it's unfortunate that people always put him in a mold. Let him be him. He's a quarterback. He's a great quarterback.
"When are we going to start talking about when Peyton Manning is going to start doing what Mike Vick does?" Mora said. "Let's flip it. The guy wins games, and that's the role of a quarterback, to win games. He doesn't need to do anything. I think it's ridiculous that people keep asking me that question. I don't know why people are so narrow-minded that they can't understand why the guy is a great player."
Jim, no one is saying he's not a great player. The point is that he's not a great pocket passer, and cutting Peerless Price or Dez White won't make Vick a better pocket passer.
Our guess is that, in time, Brian Finneran and then Michael Jenkins and then Roddy White will be demoted as the revolving door of receivers continues. And even though Terrell Owens has expressed interest in joining the team, maybe the Falcons realize that they can't credibly blame him when Vick rarely throws T.O. the ball because Vick's first instinct is to pull it down and run when the pocket cracks -- or to throw it to tight end Alge Crumpler when Vick gets toward the sideline.
Hell, why not just poop-can all of the receivers and go with two running backs and three tight ends on every play? If the defense puts corners or safeties on the tight ends, throw them a short pass and let them bowl the guys over. If the defense uses linebackers, Vick sprints to the outside.
We like Mora -- but we'd have a lot more respect for him if he would just recognize what everyone else around the league has already figured out.
And ain't it funny that, as we pointed out in a Thursday Morning One-Liner on Collegefootballtalk.com, that Vick's little brother Marcus doesn't want to be like Mike.
Instead, Marcus is emulating Peyton Manning.
Usually, I give PFT the benefit of the doubt. But this one is just blatant slander. Anybody who knows anything about the Falcons would have known that demoting White was a move long in coming. The problem with this article is that it makes no mention of the truly poor play that White was experiencing this season. This statement says it all:
The point is that he's not a great pocket passer, and cutting Peerless Price or Dez White won't make Vick a better pocket passer.
The problem is that White and Price definitely weren't helping. Now I've never been of the school that believed Peerless Price was a terrible player. He definitely underachieved during his time in Atlanta. But White has been absolutely terrible this year, and if the two league insiders had been inside the situation here in Atlanta, they would have never made that statements they were quoted as saying above, because of how sucky Dez has been.
Now I do agree with PFT in that I don't think Vick will ever be a great pocket passer, and probably at best will be average to above average for an NFL starter. But this "Vick is not as good as people hype him to be, or he is a RB, or he can't throw, etc." talk is just a bit like old news.
And basically what MOra is trying to get across to answer these critics with a big fat "SO?"
I don't think Mora/Knapp, or Blank are every going to put that expectation onto Vick that he has to complete 60% of his passes and avearge 250 yards per game, and have a TD-INT ratio of 2:1 or 3:1. Vick wins, and that's all that matters to Mora, Knapp, and Blank. And they aren't going to change things as long as that keeps happening. I know I'm finally buying into it, but the problem is that PFT refuses to do so.