Michael Vick is not the MVP yet
The Michael Vick mania is on overdrive.
But is Vick the favorite for MVP?
Are the Eagles even the favorite for the NFC East?
Plus, will the Giants suffer from another swoon? Can the Cowboys win more games than the Redskins? Was the Donovan McNabb contract good business?
We explore with strong takes, SCHEIN 9 style, with a game of boom or bust ...
1. Michael Vick is the current leader for league MVP
What Vick did Monday night was epic. As we wrote for Tuesday, it was the single greatest individual performance I’ve ever seen, especially when you factor in it was a road division game against a team that beat Philly earlier in the year. I asked John Madden on Madden Football if he had ever seen anything like it, such precision, domination, quickness, execution with ease. Madden agreed with my take. It was like the 'Skins were in quick sand.
But as classic as it was to witness, let’s take a deep breath before with anoint Vick as the leader in the clubhouse for the prestigious award. Vick has been sensational. But it is a current bust.
Michael Vick has attempted just 153 passes this year. Or the exact same total as Kevin Kolb. Yes, Vick currently possess the single best statistic of any quarterback in the NFL, having not thrown a pick against 11 touchdowns. It’s amazing. And sure, Vick is winning games. He has been dominant. But, let’s not put the cart before the horse.
Vick is without question in the conversation. And if he keeps playing like this, and the Eagles keep winning, Vick will win the award. But right now, there are other quarterbacks who have played the entire season, who play on winning teams, who have been incredible. Vick is not the favorite.
2. Vick will dominate the Giants
It won’t be like it was against the Redskins. But the Giants limp into Philly for this NFC East clash on Sunday night.
The recipe for the Giants' success starts with their incredible defensive line. I think you have to believe, based upon valid precedent, that the Dallas game was a blip and not a trend. The Giants have the pass rusher up front to pressure Vick. Osi Umenyiora meets his old punching bag Winston Justice. Justin Tuck and Barry Cofield have had good seasons. If you blitz Vick, you have no chance.
But even with the Giants having the players up front to match up, Vick is in too great of a zone. The Giants gave up plays downfield to Jon Kitna. DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin will light the Giants defensive backs up. LeSean Mccoy is a threat out of the backfield and his skills running the ball make Vick a nightmare on play action. It’s a boom.
3. Eli Manning bounces back this Sunday night
This is a bust. So much for my pick of Eli as league MVP, though he was the leader at the midway point!
This isn’t an indictment of Eli. Shawn Andrews has missed practice. David Diehl is out. So is Shaun O’Hara. We could be looking at Will Beatty, Kevin Boothe, and Richie Seubert left tackle to center. This is not exactly encouraging against Trent Cole and company. Even if Andrews plays, it is clear he won’t be at 100 percent.
The Giants will still be sans Eli’s security blanket, wide receiver Steve Smith. It’s tough to envision Eli being super productive. But he will be better than he was against Dallas. And I like Hakeem Nicks in this game.
4. The Eagles win the NFC East
Let’s not pretend that the Giants' first eight games didn’t exist. And I fully expect the Giants to lose in Philly Sunday night. But I still like the Giants to win the division. This is a bust.
The Giants have the Jags next week. They still have the Skins twice. New York has Philly at the Meadowlands. A game in Green Bay will be tough. The Vikings will have postage stamps on their collective foreheads by the time the Giants face them around Christmas. The injured players will get healthy. I still believe in the Giants defense. Ahmad Bradshaw is a stud. The Giants will win the division.
5. This is the best coaching job in Andy Reid’s career
This is a boom. The mixture on offense, the balance with the run and the pass, the guts to bag Kevin Kolb even though he was a main reason you traded Donovan McNabb, has all been a part of Reid’s amazing season.
It pains me when Philly fans don’t appreciate him. Andy Reid is a winner. He is one of the best coaches in sports. Do you remember what the franchise was like before him?
6. The Donovan McNabb contract was a mistake
Call this a bust. Once ESPN scooped ESPN to report that ESPN was wrong originally and you see that the guaranteed money was closer to $3 million than $40 million (big difference folks), this is a good deal. The Skins have been wretched as of late. But the defense takes blame. Santana Moss had a pick go off of his hands. They need more talent at receiver. McNabb, cardiovascular endurance jokes aside, can still play at a high level for a few more years with talent around him. Bruce Allen will beef up the receiver position.
7. The Redskins should cut Albert Haynesworth
I couldn’t find a bigger boom if I tried, as Haynesworth is the ultimate bust. He has done nothing since signing with Washington except steal money from Daniel Snyder. All that’s missing is a mask and a gun. I’m glad ESPN cameras caught him dogging it on Monday night. And now he’s pining for his Titans days as the game in Tennessee approaches. Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen need to show some guts and do the right thing. There is no cap. Nobody is trading for him next offseason. Get the loser out of the locker room and cut Albert Haynesworth.
8. The Cowboys will win more games this year than Washington
Credit Jason Garrett for instilling some needed toughness into the Cowboys. And the Cowboys will beat the Matthew Stafford-less Lions this weekend. But this is a bust. Even just two games behind, Dallas isn’t good enough to catch up.
9. Sunday proved it was all Wade Phillips' fault in Dallas
That’s a bust. As Keith Brooking told us on Sirius NFL Radio Thursday, “I’m disappointed we let Wade down.” The players get blame here, too. And of course, the main culprit in the Dallas failures remains Jerry Jones, who is still reluctant to fire overmatched president and general manager Jerry Jones.