In Pittsburgh’s week 3 victory against the St. Louis Rams, Ben Roethlisberger suffered a devastating MCL sprain which will keep him sidelined for 4-6 weeks. Taking over under center during his absence will be the intriguing veteran, Michael Vick.
Vick has been on the team for a mere month and was signed just before the start of the regular season. He came on for Roethlisberger late in the 3rd quarter and went 5-6 throwing the ball with 38 yards, but was sacked twice.
Mike Tomlin has already come out and said that he will keep Vick in his comfort zone which means he will simplify things offensively. Vick has been known for his dynamic athletic ability throughout his career, but he may not be able to showcase that much with his different role on a new offense. It seems as if he will be used more so as a game manager than anything else and will be looked upon to hold onto the ball and avoid turnovers. As a starter over the past three seasons, Vick has compiled a 6-13 record. His 28.3 QBR in 2014 was the worst among all QBs with over 100 pass attempts.
In the 4-6 games that Vick will start, he faces a pretty tough schedule as seen below:
- vs Baltimore Ravens (TNF)
- @ San Diego Chargers (MNF)
- vs Arizona Cardinals
- @ Kansas City Chiefs
- vs Cincinnati Bengals
- vs Oakland Raiders
To start things off, Vick will clash with the divisional rival, Baltimore Ravens in a Primetime matchup. Despite being 0-3, the Ravens present a tough test in Vick’s first start. He opens up his season with back-to-back Primetime games with San Diego next on the schedule for a Monday Night Football affair. Another tough matchup in the spotlight. He then faces the undefeated Cardinals team and could also start a huge divisional game against the 3-0 Bengals. Not an easy road for the 15th year QB.
Luckily for the Steelers, they have a great supporting cast surrounding Vick. All Pro wide receiver, Antonio Brown, headlines the group and could very well be the best WR that Vick has ever played with. Plus, he has up an coming WRs in Markus Wheaton and Martavis Bryant; Bryant returns in week 5 after serving a 4 game suspension. Not to mention, Le’Veon Bell just returned from suspension and gives Vick a great receiving option out of the backfield. Look for Bell and DeAngelo Williams to receive a heavy workload. The young defense has really stepped up for Pittsburgh thus far as well.
With the schedule considered, I’d give the Steelers 2-3 wins during Vick’s tenure as the starter. I just don’t see him possessing the same arm strength and athleticism that made him elite a few years back. While he will flash the big play ability, there will be some mistakes in there as well as he is fumble prone and not reliable throwing the ball either. If he doesn’t produce, the Steelers could turn to 3rd year QB, Landry Jones who has yet to throw a pass during the regular season.
While many may be looking forward to the return of Michael Vick, don’t get too excited. I wouldn’t expect much from the now 35 year old QB. He won’t lose games for Pittsburgh, but he won’t win any for them either like “Big Ben” has.
I’ve seen some label Vick as a hot waiver wire add for week 4, but I wouldn’t go that far. If anything, you add him if you have QB troubles and an extra spot on your bench and see how he performs. Definitely not worth anything until he proves something. What he proved last year is that he is far past his prime and not a reliable option in real-time NFL or anything else for that matter. Maybe he still has something left in the tank, who knows.