Sunday, Nov. 28, 2010
By John Mullin
Michael Vick has yet to throw an interception this season, while tossing 11 touchdown passes. That in fact should be considered good news for the Bears. Why? Hes due.
Actually, New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin agrees. Coughlin said last week that Vick passes have been in defenders hands, just not caught. Of course, that would include some Giants hands because Coughlins guys didnt pick Vick either.
In his five previous seasons as the No. 1 quarterback, all with the Atlanta Falcons, Vick threw 69 touchdown passes vs. 49 interceptions. That equates to one pick-Vick every 33 attempts.
Even factoring in the new-and-improved gyroscope in Vicks inner passer, he has thrown 191 passes this season without being intercepted yet. Again, he is due.
And while he admittedly hasnt always made the right decisions for himself, he believes he is now, in more ways than one.
I think Ive gone through my progressions, keeping my eyes down field, staying balanced when I throw the football, Vick said. It doesnt necessarily have anything to do with the running game, but making good decisions with the football.
Not to make simple he-cant-be-this-good predictions, but he cant.
Vicks passer rating of 108.7 leads the NFL. The three highest ratings in NFL history are 121.1 by Peyton Manning in 2004; 117.2 by Tom Brady in 2007; and 112.8 by Steve Young back in 1994.
Vicks season right now, extrapolating it into a full season, would rank 11th all-time, just ahead of Sid Luckmans 107.5 from 1943 and below Dan Marinos 108.9 in 1984.
In Vicks favor is that hes 30 and three of the top four on the all-time list (Brady, Young, Joe Montana) were over 30 when they posted their career-best ratings.
But turnovers are the single biggest determinant of game outcomes and for all of Jay Cutlers peccadilloes, Vick against the Bears defense is the matchup that should decided this game.
Few Bears games since the Detroit opener and maybe Carolina, even with Todd Collins starting, have been pretty simple calls to make. This one, however, is arguably the hardest to date this season. The Eagles are No. 2 in scoring at 28.4, the Bears are tied for No. 1 in defense giving up 14.6 per game, and that equates to two units each eminently capable of taking over a game.
If Mike Martz continues to direct an offense that stays on the ground without putting the ball on the ground, the Bears will have their 4-0 November.
Bears 16 Eagles 14
John "Moon" Mullin is CSNChicago.com's Bears Insider, and appears regularly on Bears Postgame Live and Chicago Tribune Live. Follow Moon on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bears information.