Two days after many of the NFL’s teams reach the midway point of their respective seasons, the nation will head to the polls to vote for the candidate who will sit in the Oval Office for the next four years.
Unlike President Obama, embattled signal callers Mark Sanchez and Mike Vick popularity numbers are dwindling within their respective fanbases.
Vick has cut down on the turnovers that crippled the Eagles offense in the season’s first half but a three-game losing streak since their 3-1 start forced Andy Reid to consider benching the 32-year-old for rookie Nick Foles.
On Wednesday, Reid sent a text to the media confirming that Vick will start Monday Night against the New Orleans Saints. Despite Reid’s vote of confidence, next season is not guaranteed.
Further north, Sanchez has been given the approval of Rex Ryan while Jets fans drown him in boos while subscribing to the cult of backup Tim Tebow during their 3-5 start.
The Jets have tried the conservative approach with Sanchez. It hasn’t worked. The definition of insanity is trying the same thing over and over expecting different results. They need to take a chance on a high risk, high reward option.
Vick has improved immensely as a passer and leader since his days as an Atlanta Falcon.
Vick still has flaws but if Rex Ryan is looking for the most talented mobile, left-handed signal caller to lead his ground and pound attack, it’s not Tim Tebow.
Tebow is an inspirational figure and a fiery leader but he is also extremely limited. His completion percentage of 46.5% last season was 13 percent lower than Vick’s 60% completion rate.
Vick’s 53.3 QBR is just a few points lower than Tony Romo’s and while his fourth quarter heroics aren’t as ballyhooed as Tebow’s but he’s already led a trio of comebacks against the Browns, Ravens and Giants.
Vick may struggle with turnovers on occasion but Tebow shares his propensity for putting the pigskin on the turf without the threat of a consistent passing threat. The only difference is that Vick has the arm strength and accuracy to move the offense up and down the field. Most importantly, he should come cheap for a contender.
Eagles fans have been spoiled in comparison to what Jets fans have endured with Sanchez under center. This season, Sanchez ranks last in the league in completion percentage, 30th in yards per attempt, 30th in passer rating, and is a non-threat scrambling.
Sanchez and Tebow have their moments but both are pedestrian NFL quarterbacks. Tebow’s slow motion throwing motion gives defensive backs the half-second they need to recover and jump on his passes. Sanchez lacks a pocket presence, his footwork is more suspect than the Barefooted Bandit and just as often as he’s stripped from behind, his passes are tipped or picked at the line like low-hanging fruit.
Despite Sanchez’s March contract extension, his new contract doesn’t make him untradeable by any means. The fourth-year pro is owed $6 million in 2013 and just $12 million over the final three years, much of which is non-guaranteed.
Conversely, if Vick is cut in the offseason, he’ll come at a much cheaper price tag than the $16 million he’s projected to make in 2013.
Tebow’s inability to anticipate or diagnose blitzes or defensive schemes would make Eagles fans nominate Vick as a Rhodes Scholar.
Vick’s contract allows him to be cut after this season with no charge to their 2013 salary cap but the market should be much more positive than it was in 2009 after his release from Kansas’ Leavenworth Prison.
If Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano is interested in tailoring an offense around a mobile quarterback, Vick should be their man. With Tebow as his backup, the Jets won’t have to run different schemes for the top quarterbacks in their depth chart or gear their offense to account for a lefty and righty passer combination.
Once healthy, the Jets defense should be among the league’s elite. Desean Jackson still believes Vick can be an elite quarterback and what he says isn’t all bluster.
Last December, Woody Johnson watched Vick dissect Rex Ryan’s vaunted defense apart in a 45-19 win. For Johnson, the New York media, Ryan and Jets fans, a Vick-Tebow duo could be a match made in heaven and an improvement over their current predicament.798351