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July 11, 2014, 3:45 pm

Reid knows Vick needs improvement

  • Written by Dan Gelston
  • Published in Football

Sit Vick?

No, Eagles coach Andy Reid certainly won't bench Michael Vick, not after the first game of the season.

But some of last season's problems with the franchise QB lingered into an erratic performance in the opener.

Reid just isn't ready to pin all the blame on Vick for four interceptions and an offense that only scored 17 points on 456 total yards.

"I know Michael took the blame yesterday," Reid said Monday. "But it's not a one-man show. That's not what it is."

The pass-happy Reid did his best to make Vick a one-man gang for most of Sunday's 17-16 win over the Cleveland Browns. Vick attempted a whopping 56 passes, even as he took a beating from the Browns — and an increasingly agitated fan base that expects more out of him.

Vick can't seem to find the happy medium.

He's been accused of playing with a reckless style that's made him injury prone and absent for parts of the season.

When Vick tries to rein in his runs, he hears he's ill-suited as pocket passer who can't adjust to defenses.

Vick never found had any consistency until he led the Eagles 91 yards for the winning drive against the Browns. But there were misreads. There was miscommunication. And overall, there was just something missing as he continues to find his way in this offense.

Fans complained on Twitter and talk radio that Vick should have been yanked for backup and preseason surprise Nick Foles. Vick, though, had one defender Monday across the street from the Eagles' practice facility.

"I think he made a great drive at the end of the game," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "He saved the day."

Just like he's done before.

Reid sounded more like a coach dissecting his team after an ugly loss, rather than his quarterback. He knows Vick, knows his ability to bounce back. So, his concern isn't aimed at one locker.

The Eagles, after all, committed too many turnovers, were called for unnecessary penalties, yapped at the referees, and needed improvement in every offensive area from protection to playcalling.

"All three of those things fit into what took place and you've got to add the route running in there too," Reid said. "If they're going to come up and bang you around, then you've got to work like crazy to get yourself open and do the right thing. Everybody had a piece of that. It's always going to fall on the quarterback's shoulders and we have one that takes that responsibility and he takes it to heart. But in reality, when you put on the tape, everybody's got to do their job.

Reid says the Eagles will be fine if they eliminate mistakes because there were plenty of positives in the win. Philadelphia did have 456 total yards and the defense held the Browns' offense to just nine points.

"You play an aggressive defense that's good against the pass, particularly last year, then you have to come and you've got to be ready to roll every snap and you've got to be aggressive every snap," Reid said. "We have to do a better job with that."

The Eagles also need to work LeSean McCoy back into the offense, rather than rely on him simply to bail out Vick in the fourth quarter. McCoy rushed for 110 yards, but the bulk of those carries came in the fourth — his 55 yards rushing in the quarter were as many as he had in the first three.

All that said, the Eagles have now won five consecutive games dating back to last season, and are one of three NFC East teams to open 1-0, along with Washington and Dallas. Philadelphia plays host to Baltimore on Sunday.

Vick, though, will clearly be the story leading up to the Ravens game. Perhaps struggling to find a counterbalance between being a prototypical, drop-back passer and the ad-libbing style that makes Vick who he is — a mental, physical tug-of-war, if you will — there appears to be a delay in decisions.

"I don't think it's over-thinking," Reid said. "There were so many good things that he did in the mix there. I mean, he accumulated a ton of yards and so there were some good things. There were just some breakdowns. We've all got to look at that and make sure that we get that right."

Vick was 29 of 56 for 317 yards and two scores to go with the four picks. He ran seven times for 32 yards, including a 16-yard scamper. He was sacked twice, but more important, he was banged around overall a bit too much for Reid's liking.

"You can't go through," he said, "and have the quarterback get hit that much." — (AP)