A Breakdown of Mike Vick, and his replacement in ATL, Matt Ryan – After Mike Vick was suspended indefinitely by the NFL in 2007, the Atlanta Falcons were left without a franchise quarterback. A terrible 2007 season that saw them finish 4-12 put them in position to snatch up Matt Ryan with the third pick of the 2008 NFL Draft. Ryan, out of Boston College was the top quarterback in his class. Vick would return during the 2009 season with the Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles traded Donovan McNabb during the 2010 offseason, naming his backup Kevin Kolb the starting QB. Kolb was knocked out of a Week 1 game vs. the Green Bay Packers and Vick assumed the reigns as the starter. NFLFilms guru Greg Cosell took the time to analyze both Vick and Ryan heading into the 2012 season:
2012 is the crossroads year for Vick. It begins with his first full off-season as an undisputed starter since his final year in Atlanta in 2006. He must use the time to better understand the subtleties of quarterback play, the nuances demanded to perform well play after play, week after week. NFL quarterback is a highly disciplined craft. For those like Vick who are exceptional athletes, it requires more intellectual discipline to properly harness that athleticism than is necessary for those players predisposed to play in the pocket. Perhaps the most damning assessment of Vick is this: his frenetic, haphazard approach sabotages his ability to stay on the field.
… [T]here’s one element of Ryan’s game in which he struggles, and he will need to improve in order to play with greater consistency in the more important games, against the better defenses. Ryan is primarily a pocket passer. Certainly he can roll out by design at times, but he’s at his best sitting in a comfortable cradle with his feet balanced, striding into his throws with functional space. That’s the ideal scenario: a secure pocket with room to deliver. Unfortunately, that does not happen as often as you might expect.
Which of these two players would you want as your franchise QB? Conventional wisdom would seem to point you in the direction of the more traditional Matt Ryan. However, once you take into account his poor playoff record (0-3) and his inability to win consistently outdoors (11-12 in games played outdoors during his 1st four NFL season), the arrow shifts toward Mike Vick.
My Final Verdict: I’d take Vick and his spectacularly inconsistent ways over the thoroughly mediocre Ryan at this point. Maybe Matt turns the corner one of these days. But Vick has made it to an NFC Title game and I feel his style of play has a higher ceiling than Matt Ryan’s. Follow the link to the original article and draw your own conclusions: Cosell Talks: Michael Vick / Matt Ryan