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Silverman: Vick’s Mistakes May Keep The Eagles From Soaring

Quarterback Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles is sacked by outside linebacker O'Brien Schofield #50 of the Arizona Cardinals. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Quarterback Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles is sacked by outside linebacker O’Brien Schofield #50 of the Arizona Cardinals. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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By Steve Silverman
» More Columns

The Philadelphia Eagles usually are cause for concern.

When the Giants are preparing for Andy Reid, they know that a full package of offensive excellence and trickery may await them.

As they prepare for their Sunday night game against the Birds, the Giants may have noticed one thing as they look at film of the Philadelphia offense.

Michael Vick doesn’t know what he’s doing anymore.

Vick has been one of the most electrifying players in the NFL since he was the No. 1 pick in the NFL by the Atlanta Falcons in 2001.

He was the rarest combination of speed, quickness and a powerful arm when he came into the league, and he has had moments where he has been spectacular. He has been a Pro Bowl quarterback four times in his career.

He came back in 2009 from his prison term after his revolting role in a dog-fighting scandal.

He was a humbled man who seemed to learn something from his experience, and he appeared to retain much of his athletic ability and quarterback skills. He fit Reid’s system well.

But the Vick the Giants will see Sunday night in Philadelphia is not the same quarterback he used to be.

He has been turning the ball over and stopping the Eagles’ offense in its tracks. In the first two weeks of the season, the Eagles fought hard and overcame his six interceptions to record a pair of one-point wins.

Last week, he did not throw an interception, but he fumbled twice. One of those was an absolute horror show. He fumbled the ball on the last play of the first half against the Arizona Cardinals, and the ball was picked up by James Sanders and returned 93 yards for a touchdown.

The reason Vick fumbled the ball is that he did not see Cardinals safety Kerry Rhodes lining up to blitz him. Vick was obliterated by the blitz and he absorbed a hellacious shot.

After the fact, Vick has said that he saw Rhodes but merely miscalculated. He defended himself by saying he stopped throwing interceptions and merely fumbled a couple of times.

Vick is struggling to do something all quarterbacks must due to be successful. He is not reading defenses consistently or well.

As a result, his game is in trouble and the Eagles are having problems.

A winning record after three games does not matter. The Eagles will not be a winning team and they will not be a playoff factor this year if Vick can’t see the blitz or can’t read the coverage of the secondary.

Mistakes kill quarterbacks in the NFL, and Vick is making a ton.

There is fear in Philadelphia that their quarterback has lost this very important ability at a point in his career where there should be no problems.

If Vick was making mistakes in this area when he came back in 2009, it might be understandable because he had been out of the NFL and in prison in 2007 and 2008. But after spending much of the ’09 season on the sidelines, Vick had a 21-6 TD-to-interception ratio in 2010.

He appeared to be right back on track.

Now, Vick’s game is marked by wrong decisions. He is not seeing the blitz and he can’t read double coverage.

No team should be able to take advantage of these problems more than the Giants.

The Giants will be playing to take the next step in a very long season. The Eagles and Vick are playing for survival.

Will Vick limit the turnovers and play big against the Giants this week, or will the G-Men defense make him run for his life? Sound off with your thoughts and comments below…