Michael Vick has the talent to make plays like few other quarterbacks in NFL history, but Eagles quarterbacks coach Doug Pederson sees a down side in that.
Pederson says that one of the things he’s going to emphasize with Vick as organized team activities begin today is that Vick needs to cut down on the mistakes he makes when he tries to make a play that isn’t there.
“He gets caught sometimes doing too much, trying to do too much, and that’s where he gets in trouble,” Pederson told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “We eliminate those and keep him within our system, and positive things are going to happen.”
Vick had 10 fumbles and a career-high 14 interceptions last season, and those are the plays Pederson and Vick are reviewing.
“I’ve had a chance to sit down with Mike, one-on-one, in the room, by ourselves, watch the good, watch the bad, and for me not only to teach off of that but just to watch his expression, see how he reacts to the negative,” Pederson said. “He’s learned from that. I think it makes him a better quarterback going forward, obviously. If we cut those two areas down, be more efficient in the red zone, don’t turn the ball over as much . . . your chances of success obviously go up.”
Pederson said Vick is hard on himself when watching those plays, asking, “What was I thinking?” and “Why did I do that?” A lot of the time the answer is he’s thinking that he can rely on his natural athleticism to make plays when things break down. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
“Bottom line is he’s faster than everybody else, pretty much, except the secondary,” Pederson said. “It’s tough because you want him to stay there, but yet again he gets so many positive yards for us that we’re not going to take that away from him.”
Pederson’s job is to help Vick cut down on the mistakes, without taking away from the big plays he makes when he improvises.