Philadelphia Eagles: Can the Offensive Line Protect Vick?
Against the St. Louis Rams in a 31-13 win, Mike Vick appeared to have played a great football game. However, his stats are very deceiving. He only threw for 187 yards on 14-32 passing, a 44% completion rate.
He did run for 98 yards, which appears to be a great thing, but can also be bad. Vick was hit 11 times during the game. It may have been the all-out blitzes thrown at him, or it could”ve been the offensive line’s poor blocking.
Vick escaping the blitz is a very good sign, because less teams may blitz heavily on the Eagles now. But how long can this mediocre and inexperienced offensive line last?
Starting a rookie center who was a sixth round pick, Jason Kelce, is handling a tough task. Stop heaving blitzing teams in his first year learning the Eagles offense. Kyle DeVan, who has only been for the Eagles for one week, also has the same challenge.
After Danny Watkins had a poor preseason, the Eagles picked up Kyle DeVan who was cut from the Colts to step in at right guard and protect Mike Vick’s blindside. DeVan played under new offensive line coach Howard Mudd in Indianapolis, but again he is learning a totally new system.
Veteran tackle Jason Peters and Guard Todd Herremans have to be mentors to these two players, and help them pick up the system.
Since Vick is such a threat with his legs and runs more than most quarterbacks, he gets hit more often. Vick has had injury problems in the past, and the Eagles have to do all they can to protect him in the pocket. Without him, there “dream team” season would be ruined.
Hopefully as the season progresses the offensive line will gel and mature as a unit. If they can, the Eagles will contend for a Super Bowl.