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Howard Mudd wants to simplify Eagles line, improve Vick’s understanding

H. Muddplayer

While reading a remarkable and recommended profile of Eagles offensive line coach Howard Mudd on Wednesday by Marcus Hayes of the Philadelphia Inquirer, I learned that Mudd has nearly died a few times while riding a motorcycle.

He’s also had three knee replacements, nine total knee surgeries, and a surgery to fuse three veterbrae that was performed during a motorcycling trip to Africa with defensive line coach Jim Washburn.

So fixing the Eagles offensive line and improving Michael Vick’s awareness should be no sweat for the 69-year-old.

“There’s some stuff we need to clean up. Including Mike’s understanding of who’s not blocked; that, if there’s a guy who’s not blocked, get it out of your hand,” Mudd told Hayes in a separate article. “We want Mike to live to play the next play.”

Mudd, who returned to coaching after a one-year retirement after a legendary run with the Colts, relies on athleticism and movement more than Philly’s old line approach.  But Mudd says his intent is to simplify things, much like new defensive coordinator Juan Castillo intends to simplify the defense.

“We make football too complicated,” Mudd said. “It doesn’t make any difference how old you are. In order to be coached, you’ve got to want to be coached. The ones who don’t want to are going to get kicked in the ass and do it anyway.”

Mudd brings experience, confidence, and toughness to a challenging position in Philly.  After what he’s been through, making up for lost time after the lockout should be no problem.

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29 Responses to “Howard Mudd wants to simplify Eagles line, improve Vick’s understanding”
  1. hystoracle says: Jun 1, 2011 10:45 AM

    Restated: Mudd wants to dumb down the Line “system”, so Vick is able to understand it. Inferring that he couldn’t understanding last years system.

    i.e. Mudd thinks Vick is dumb and holds onto the ball too long.

  2. sweded775 says: Jun 1, 2011 10:55 AM

    “that, if there’s a guy who’s not blocked, get it out of your hand,” Simple enough!
    “It doesn’t make any difference how old you are. In order to be coached, you’ve got to want to be coached. The ones who don’t want to are going to get kicked in the ass and do it anyway.” that line tickles me with delight! No wonder we picked the best guard in the draft! Our two line coach were the best acquisitions this off season bar none!

  3. hobartbaker says: Jun 1, 2011 10:56 AM

    Simplifying and clarifying has been a lifelong cause for Roger. Hence the expression “Clear as Mudd.”.

  4. hobartbaker says: Jun 1, 2011 10:57 AM

    …uuuhh…Howard.

  5. moochzilla says: Jun 1, 2011 11:00 AM

    That may be a bit harsh. More likely they’re trying to re-engineer the schemes to take into account for Vick’s scrambling ad-lib (which, admittedly, became excessive at times late last year).

    Imagine how hard it is to shift from pass protecting Kolb to Vick. Totally different job. Worth preparing for.

  6. massappeal12345 says: Jun 1, 2011 11:05 AM

    A motorcycle trip “to” Africa.

    Sounds kinda funny.

  7. snowpea84 says: Jun 1, 2011 11:09 AM

    Lolls.
    Vick can’t figure out what is happening with defenses, and that’s somehow going to change in one offseason with no coaches to work with.

    Maybe that’s a godsend for Vick. He gets by on ability, and if other teams don’t have good schemes installed it’ll be that much easier for him.

  8. hank10 says: Jun 1, 2011 11:15 AM

    Let me get this straight. The new offensive line coach wants to simplify the blocking assignments from the previous o-line coach who is now the defensive coordinator and who wants to simplify the blitz schemes from the fired d-coordinator who was too complicated while replacing the deceased d-coordinator who was a master at complicated schemes?

    Anyone have an aspirin?

  9. saturn1111 says: Jun 1, 2011 11:18 AM

    @hystoracle:

    For all of his career (except his first year back from prison), Vick has possessed exceptional talents for escaping and running.

    This has caused two problems. One has been well known for awhile now: he holds on to the ball too long.

    The other is the one that Mudd identifies in the article that PFT cites: because he’s been able to rely on his escapability, Vick hasn’t had to have the same level of awareness of who is unblocked as a less mobile quarterback might.

    None of this means that Mudd thinks Vick is dumb. But your interpretation of it has made me wonder about you.

  10. karlpilkington says: Jun 1, 2011 11:21 AM

    Wow, sure does sound like a slap in da face to me.

  11. hobartbaker says: Jun 1, 2011 11:43 AM

    If they try to put too much information on Mike’s wristband the printing is too small to read accurately.

  12. seabreezes51 says: Jun 1, 2011 11:45 AM

    I think the Eagles have maybe had some coming to Jesus moment with the complexity of their systems.
    Both Washburn AND Mudd are preaching simplicity. Andy has been trying for a decade to outsmart everyone, in the game plan, drafting, schemes, everything….. He has always been that guy that wanted to do something weird that worked and made him look like the smartest guy on the planet.
    Hiring these two coaches and the draft this year were different.
    Now, if only the DC choice hadn’t been one of those “I’m smarter than you” moments…..

  13. sweded775 says: Jun 1, 2011 12:00 PM

    1st DOWN!!! Very eloquent Saturn! btw Danny Watkins resume is astounding (character, integrity) how much say do u think Mudd had in the decision?

  14. marvsleezy says: Jun 1, 2011 12:01 PM

    Why was Mudd “forced” to retire from Indy?

  15. joetoronto says: Jun 1, 2011 12:01 PM

    hystoracle says: Jun 1, 2011 10:45 AM

    Restated: Mudd wants to dumb down the Line “system”, so Vick is able to understand it. Inferring that he couldn’t understanding last years system.

    i.e. Mudd thinks Vick is dumb and holds onto the ball too long.
    ************************************************
    Well, Mudd is absolutely right then. Like it or not, Vick can’t read a comic book, much less a play book.

    The O-linemen are going to be blamed for tons of sacks that should be on Vick. He’ll hang on to it way too long and sometimes, he’ll actually run right into a sack.

    Through it all though, there’s a good chance he’ll fumble the ball too.

    Somethings never change.

  16. tommythek says: Jun 1, 2011 12:26 PM

    I wish we had a head coach who thought he was dumber than everyone else, so everyone around here would be happy around here.
    Mudd had to retire because he kept slapping Peyton in the back of the head when he he made a mistake during practice, This led to the first neck surgery. Vick will be much better.

  17. sweded775 says: Jun 1, 2011 12:28 PM

    Mudd’s lines in Indianapolis allowed 18.5 sacks per season.

    Mudd understands that sometimes you just get beat. But if anyone falters in either technique or assignment . . .

    “The guys who don’t do what they’re supposed to do up front, they’re not going to like coming over to the sideline. It’s going to be ugly with me,” Mudd said.

    It’s more about taking weight of Vick’s shoulders its challenging enough to see the lanes and throw the ball into a window, something Vick excels at, his elusiveness allows him to avoid sacks and do what Peyton n Rivers do while running with the speed of a 4.4 40p

  18. kevsright says: Jun 1, 2011 1:23 PM

    What Bad Newz Vick needs to “understand”:

    Every time he suits up as a QB, he’s flirting with a fraud charge.

    Fraud would be a violation of his probation, and a quick trip back to jail. :twisted:

    So, keep it up, Ron Mexico. The sooner he’s gone from the Eagles, the sooner we can move in a positive direction.

  19. firejimcadwell says: Jun 1, 2011 2:06 PM

    Mudd has gone from an S Class Benz to hopped up Too Fast Too Furious Honda CRX, I would say poor guy but he’s the one that left the Colts.

    Of course it’s not a shock to see that he had to dumb down his scheme for Vick,

    Mudd with the assistance of Manning made chicken pie out of chicken $hit for years in Indy with their weak OL. Peyton Manning is the reason they have low sack totals. With nearly every other qb behind that line, they would easily be in the 60+ sack totals.

  20. hateradeonrocks says: Jun 1, 2011 2:50 PM

    pretty much everyone that said Vick can’t understand the playbook is racist. I’m not being sarcastic either I have season tickets to the Eagles I know the game of football and he clearly understands the concept of this offense. The offensive lineman had trouble with a back up center trying to call out the blitz combinations. But nice to see the KKK likes football.

  21. cesquire says: Jun 1, 2011 3:06 PM

    Any good profile of Howard Mudd should point out that Jimmy Johnson said Howard Mudd was “the best in the league at stealing defensive signals” (cheating ala Bill Belichick’s spygate) when he was an assistant with the Kansas City Chiefs.

  22. moochzilla says: Jun 1, 2011 3:44 PM

    cssquire,

    Great to know. Can he work a pair of binoculars at Citizen’s Bank Park during the lockout?

  23. hystoracle says: Jun 1, 2011 3:52 PM

    @saturn1111

    I don’t think Vick is dumb. I actually thought he might be working towards adjusting his game to look to throw first rather than run first. This lost offseason isn’t going to help that progression. He would be a LOT more dangerous if the defense wasn’t sure if he was going to run into the empty space or throw it over their head to an open receiver. That split second of indecision could be devastating to the defense.

    That being said, Mudd’s comments in coach speak sound like he thinks Vick doesn’t understand the blocking schemes that were in place to know where the free man is. Also, that he holds on to the ball too long. So his solution is to simply. Not a bad solution, but his comments sound like an indictment against the QB.

    Exemplified in this statement : “There’s some stuff we need to clean up. Including Mike’s understanding of who’s not blocked; that, if there’s a guy who’s not blocked, get it out of your hand,” Mudd told Hayes in a separate article. “We want Mike to live to play the next play.”

  24. justanotherdummy says: Jun 1, 2011 5:05 PM

    Vick is mentioned, and it never fails to generate racist, race-baiting and the ever present dog-fighting cracks. It truly gets old. Somebody is a racist, somebody else gets to play the role of apologist, very little is accomplished, and most certainly nothing is ever solved. A pox on both their houses.

  25. saturn1111 says: Jun 1, 2011 9:24 PM

    @hystorical

    So now Mudd’s coach speak is an indictment of the QB, not Mudd calling Vick dumb?

    You should be a cornerback. You’re brilliant at backpedaling.

    Look, we could go in a million different directions with those quotes.

    For starters: if you hate Vick, then you’ll imagine Mudd shouting those words, as if he’s pissed. And then it sounds scandalous, like he’s calling Vick out. But if you like Vick, then you imagine him shrugging and saying the exact same words as if none of it’s really a big deal: he called it “some (not a lot of) stuff that needs cleaning up.” He didn’t call it a major problem.

    So how much of this game do we want to play with Mudd’s words?

    I guess since Mudd pointed out that he’d like to see Vick live to see the next play, he’s saying that Kolb and Kafka suck.

    And since he pointed out that Vick has to pick up the unblocked man better, I guess he’s trying to say his o-line sucks, too.

    The reasoning behind those interpretations is as specious as yours, but he didn’t say either of them. Nor did he say Vick was dumb, or that he was indicting Vick.

    He’s pointing out things that Vick himself has admitted he needs to get better at.

    Look…all we know is what’s printed on the page. We don’t know the tone or the context. And Marcus Hayes is NOT to be trusted with an accurate portrayal of either.

  26. firejimcadwell says: Jun 1, 2011 11:21 PM

    @cesquire

    There is a big difference between “stealing signs” on the sideline by figuring out the calls and employing camera crews and and an idiot savant to relay the messages to the lass they have playing quarterback.

    Huge difference. One is using his own free mind, while one is cheating.

  27. kevsright says: Jun 2, 2011 9:01 AM

    Huge difference. One is using his own free mind, while one is cheating.
    **************************************

    As long as Slick Vick is on the roster, cheating is the least of our worries. :mrgreen:

  28. phillyfan4ever says: Jun 2, 2011 12:07 PM

    Ahhh I needed my dose of daily Vick bashing. People on here are so simple, must be cowboys fans

  29. kevsright says: Jun 2, 2011 4:34 PM

    phillyfan4ever says: ….must be cowboys fans
    **************************************
    Hey, watch it!
    I’m a lifelong Eagles fan. It’s just an outrage to sell our souls to sign a no-character specimen like Bad Newz Vick.
    Now, there’s talk of getting Plexiglass. WTF?!
    What’s next? Grab Clarrett from the CFL?
    Get Rae Carruth out on work release on Sundays?
    It all reeks of desperation; maybe Jeff Lurie has handed down an ultimatum, and these hare-brained moves are the result.

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