In on honor of Michael Vick’s retirement, we here at Philly Sports Network, decided to re-live some of his greatest moments as a Philadelphia Eagle. Vick decided to call it quits after 13 seasons, just two days before SuperBowl LI.
After being drafted with the first pick in the 2001 NFL Draft and having an electric start to his career, Vick would have some well documented off the field issues. After a nearly 2-year stint in prison for dog fighting, Vick would be signed by the Philadelphia Eagles, winning the NFL comeback player of the year in 2009. With all the amazing plays, Vick has been responsible for, it was tough to narrow it down to a few. So we decided to keep it to his time in Philadelphia, where his play wasn’t just electrifying, but where Vick took his game to another level at times.
Kolb out, Vick in:
In Week 1 of the 2010 season, the big story was Donovan Mcnabb’s trade to Washington, opening the gates for on-coming starter Kevin Kolb. Well, things got bad in a hurry for Kolb, as he was hit every other play until the final blow was struck. Halfway through the 2nd quarter Kolb was forced out of the game with a concussion.
The Eagles called on veteran QB Michael Vick to try and save the day. Although the birds’ didn’t get the win, Vick replacing Kolb, might have saved the season and kick-started a short, but great run for him. In just a little over a half Vick threw for 175 yards, and a touchdown, adding 103 rushing yards on 11 attempts. Needless to say Vick was a monster in his first real playing time in almost 3 seasons. Green Bay struggled to stop Vick and if it wasn’t for him running out of time, he was well on his way to knocking off the future Super Bowl Champions.
First start in 3 years:
The next week, Vick would be handed the keys to the offense as he prepared to start for the first time in 3 seasons. Taking on the Detroit Lions, Vick was almost perfect at times, seeming to score at will. Accounting for over 300 yards of offense himself, he was a problem the Lions couldn’t seem to figure out. His presence was felt on the ground that day, with the defense so afraid of Vick’s running ability, Lesean McCoy would rush for 120 yards and 3 touchdowns. Just as dangerous through the air, he would find DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin for a TD each. After a great showing in his relief of Kolb in week 1, his first start couldn’t have gone better, as the Eagles defeated the Lions 35-32 and really giving the Eagles fans, something to be excited about.
Always good to beat “Dem Boyz”:
Leading up to the Sunday Night showdown between the Birds and Cowboys, the media ran rampant with the promises of Rob Ryan and his guarantee to beat up the Eagles Offense. Needless to say, Vick and the rest of the offense took notice of the remark, as the Eagles would score early and often, leading to a blowout win 34-7. Vick ended the game completing 21/28 passes for 279 yards and 2 touchdowns, adding 50 yards on the ground. Vick showed his growth as a passer as he had three receivers with over 50-plus yards. Vick led an offense that would have over 400-plus yards and would run rampant on Rob Ryan’s, “Dominant defense”, embarrassing both his players, and the loud Coach.
On November 15, 2010, the Philadelphia Eagles would face their division rivals in Washington. It was the perfect set up for a divisional dog-fight as the Redskins were led by ex-Eagle Donovan Mcnabb and the Eagles led by the new hope, Michael Vick.
From the very first play, the Eagles asserted their dominance on the ‘Skins, scoring on an 88-yard pass to D-Jax. Vick would prove to be too much for Washington, throwing for 333 yards and 4 touchdowns and then rushing for 80 yards and two more scores. Destroying your divisional opponent is one thing, but this game would serve as a warning to the rest of the NFL, that Michael Vick was no longer just an electric athlete, but he had become a dominant QB.
Miracle in the Meadowlands II:
It is impossible to talk about Michael Vick without speaking about one of the greatest games in franchise history. On a cold December day in New York, Eagles fans watched in disgust, as their beloved team were dominated for 3 and a half quarters. Eli Manning and company played out of their mind for most of the game, as they did whatever ,whenever they wanted too.
Trailing by 21 points with a little over 7-minutes left in the game, Vick and company would launch an amazing comeback. After scoring on a quick strike to TE Brent Celek, the Eagles would opt to kick onside. After WR Riley Cooper recovered it, Vick would lead a quick drive down field. Using both his legs, and his arm to take apart the Giants defense in the fourth quarter.
Vick would later score once with his legs before hitting WR Jeremy Maclin to tie it up at 31. We all remember what happened next, the Eagles defense would beat up Eli, forcing them to punt with basically no time left. Leading to the perfect moment. Vick finished the day with over 375 yards of offense, including 130 yards on the ground. In his 13 year career, he had so many big moments to choose from, but it is the “Miracle in the Meadowlands” that will be what all Eagles Fans remember him for.
(Oh, here’s the full game for those who want to complete the trip down memory lane)
Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports