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An article EVERYONE needs to read about Michael Vick

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An article EVERYONE needs to read about Michael Vick

Postby The Lung » Thu Nov 30, 2006 11:28 am

From: http://www.fanball.com/buzz/article.cfm?id=8507

By Christian Peterson, Senior Editor

Missing the Point

I've already done this once this year – before the season even started – but it appears I have no choice but to do it again. Yes, I'm going to bat for Michael Vick. Again. Perhaps it's because I work in the anti-Michael Vick haven of the world here at Fanball Worldwide, or perhaps it's because people simply don't understand fantasy football. I don't know, but I have been forced to take action once again.

To be clear, I'm not defending Vick as an NFL quarterback. The guy stinks. He's awful. Dreadful. Appalling. I think he's one of the worst passers in the league. I think I'd rather go to battle with a blindfolded Peyton Manning throwing left-handed into a 50-miles-per-hour wind. I can't understand why he can't hit wide open receivers across the middle of the field. I don't know why he throws the ball nine million miles per hour as if he's trying to penetrate the chest cavity of receivers less than 10 yards away.

Nope. You won't find me defending his talents in this article. I could point out that his receivers give him absolutely no help by repeatedly dropping the few balls that he delivers on target. I could decry the lackadaisical downfield blocking when he takes off and runs (see such games as last week, when tight end Alge Crumpler needed just one downfield block to allow Vick to score a 60-some yard touchdown, and when Crumpler was pushed out at the two-yard line when it appeared he could have simply turned upfield to get into the end zone, and when Roddy White rejected an almost certain touchdown reception at the four-yard line).

But I won't. You see, I'm only interested in the numbers. Just the facts, ma'am. Just the facts. I don't care if he kicks five field goals. I don't care if he catches five passes for 120 yards and a touchdown. I don't care if he throws for 300 yards and three scores. I don't care if he rushes for 200 yards. I don't care if he flips off the crowd. I don't care if his pseudonym is Ron Mexico, Ron Burgundy, or Ron Reagan. I don't care if he apologizes or not, because I won't be apologizing for the fact that he puts up stats befitting of one of the best quarterbacks in all of fantasy football.

It seems many of my colleagues – and, I suspect, many of you – are blinded as to what wins fantasy football games. Namely, numbers. Stats. Pure and simple, stats are all that matter. But the fact that most of the people I spend my days with seem content to ignore Vick in the hope that he'll simply go away (some, I'm convinced, actually closed their eyes to avoid seeing him as he broke off 50 yards at a time against the Saints last week), or worse, are simply ignorant of his fantasy prowess, leads me to believe that most of us simply don't understand that the whole point of fantasy football is to score as many points as possible.

It's a revolutionary concept, I know.

Without getting into the details, suffice it to say that nearly all of my co-workers are rabid anti-Vickites. Even when I repeatedly explain to them that Vick is the third-ranked fantasy quarterback, or the fourth, or the second, as he's been at some point throughout the season, my pleas go in one ear and out the other with every Vick incompletion. Some, in fact, seem to take it as a personal affront to their fantasy expertise every time Vick fires a bullet five feet over one of his intended recievers.

This is my effort to enlighten them, and you, as to just how valuable Mr. Vick is.

Let's start with the numbers:

2006 Passing Stats
G Att Comp Yards TDs Int
11 291 149 1,770 13 9


23 passers have more yards. 10 have more touchdown passes. 12 have fewer interceptions. 24 have a better passer rating than Vick's (72.1). These numbers cannot be disputed.

However, my sources have revealed to me that quarterbacks are also awarded points for statistics they compile while rushing the ball. I don't make the rules, I just work here.

2006 Rushing Stats
G Att Yards TDs
11 95 870 2


It seems our indigent passer has a significant advantage over his peers in these categories. He has 42 more rushing attempts than anyone else. 576 yards separate he from his nearest competitor. Remarkably, three quarterbacks have more rushing touchdowns than Vick and six others have matched him.

Vick, in fact, ranks 11th in the entire NFL in rushing yards. He's ahead of such fantasy stalwarts as Brian Westbrook, Joseph Addai, Ronnie Brown, Jamal Lewis, Willis McGahee, and Kevin Jones, just to name a few. Oh, and he's scored more rushing touchdowns than Tiki Barber, a consensus first-round fantasy pick last fall.

Our passing-impaired friend is on pace for an astonishing 1,265 rushing yards, which would obliterate the previous NFL record of 968, set by Bears signal-caller Bobby Douglass in 1972. His yards-per-carry average (9.16 currently) would be enough to eclipse another record, set by Beattie Feathers, another Bear, in 1934 (8.44 yards per tote).

Now, to the fantasy implications. Here are Vick's rankings, updated through week 12, in various scoring systems:

25% touchdowns, 75% yardage
(1 point per 10 rush/receive yard, 1 per 30 passing, 4 points per passing TD, 6 for all others):
Rank Player Points
1 Michael Vick 195.7
2 Peyton Manning 190.4
3 Donovan McNabb 183.9
4 Drew Brees 182.3
5 Carson Palmer 161.9

50% touchdowns, 50% yardage
(1 point per 20 rush/receive yard, 1 per 50 passing, 4 points per passing TD, 6 for all others):
Rank Player Points
1 Peyton Manning 157.2
2 Drew Brees 149.0
3 Donovan McNabb 148.8
4 Michael Vick 143.0
5 Carson Palmer 142.7

50% touchdowns, 50% yardage, Quarterback-Heavy
(1 point per 20 rush/receive yard, 1 per 50 passing, 6 points per passing TD, 6 for all others):
Rank Player Points
1 Peyton Manning 192.8
2 Drew Brees 175.5
3 Donovan McNabb 174.8
4 Carson Palmer 170.6
5 Tom Brady 162.4
6 Michael Vick 157.0

As you can see, Vick ranks anywhere from first to sixth in several basic scoring formats. Last I checked, that was pretty good - especially for a guy who was almost certainly drafted at least three or four rounds after those ranked around him, not to mention as many as eight or nine rounds later than one Peyton Manning. But I digress.

Actually, no. I don't. Let's continue on. As I did during the preseason, let's play with the numbers a bit.

I'll use the 50/50 league, above, as my example. In such a league, 80 rushing yards (4 points) are the equivalent of one passing touchdown (also worth 4 points). Using smoke, mirrors, and the power of magic, I have determined that the top 20 rushing quarterbacks in the NFL (after Vick) have accumulated about 109 rushing yards so far this year. Subtract that from Vick's current total of 870, and I've got 761 yards to play with. The strange small silver box with numbers on it sitting near my desk tells me that 761 divided by 80 is just over 9.5. In other words, Vick's additional rushing stats are worth the equivalent of 9.5 touchdown passes. Add that to his 13 actual passing touchdowns, and suddenly he leads the NFL with 22.5 passing scores (in comparison to the other passers appearing in most leagues' top five – Manning, Palmer, and Brees, who average just 20 rushing yards between them – Vick gets another touchdown to push his total to 23.5).

When it's all said and done, Vick is currently on pace for the equivalent of 34.72 passing touchdowns this season.

Not enough to convince you? Alrighty then, a little more food for thought:

--Vick, believe it or not, is remarkably consistent. He's reached at least eight fantasy points (in my 50/50 league) in all but one game this year, and has reached double digits seven times in 11 games. Only Manning, Palmer, Brady, and Brees have fewer single-digit games, with three each.

--He's failed to pass for a touchdown four times this year. In those four games, he's averaged 98 rushing yards and scored one rushing touchdown. Translated, he's rushed for the equivalent of 6.4 touchdown passes in those four games.

--In his two worst passing games of the season (92 yards in week three, 84 yards in week 12), he also has 293 rushing yards and two touchdowns (one rush, one pass). In other words, he accounted for 20.65 fantasy points with his legs, so who really gives a rat's ass how horrible he looked passing the ball?

What's my point? Exactly what everyone else seems to be missing: It doesn't matter how, but Michael Vick is a very good fantasy quarterback.

I honestly don't care if everyone eventually comes around on Vick or not. If they do, my work is done here. If not, I'll probably be back here again next year, trying to prove his worthiness in another 1,500-word diatribe. On the bright side, I'll also continue to be able to draft him in the 10th round of our office leagues (as I did this year) and laugh heartily when he performs – once again – like an elite fantasy quarterback.

(~);}

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(~);}
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Postby beanoX3 » Thu Nov 30, 2006 11:53 am

But the fact that most of the people I spend my days with seem content to ignore Vick in the hope that he'll simply go away (some, I'm convinced, actually closed their eyes to avoid seeing him as he broke off 50 yards at a time against the Saints last week), or worse, are simply ignorant of his fantasy prowess, leads me to believe that most of us simply don't understand that the whole point of fantasy football is to score as many points as possible.

3 guesses to determine which Cafe member this brings to mind. :-B

I've got Vick in one of my leagues and it's true. Very ugly to look at on TV sometimes, but he's been decent swapping around with Palmer, especially early in the season. Normally I hate drafting him, but if no one drafts him, I will.

Great find, Lung. ;-D
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Postby Gnu314 » Thu Nov 30, 2006 12:29 pm

I've had Vick on my bench all season long in my $$ league. After reading the article I looked to see about how many points he had truly accumulated over the season.

with 50/1/6 and 10/1/6 Vick lead all QBs, besting Peyton by 2 points.

I think hey may get some nods in the playoffs if Bulger continues to struggle.
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Postby Guru13 » Thu Nov 30, 2006 12:35 pm

while the stats here are true, they are a bit misleading, in vicks career he has more lost fumbles than rushing touchdowns, 27 to 21. now if you're looking at 6 points for TD that's 126 points, minus 54 for the fumbles and it equates to 72 points, still good, but not as good as he made it seem. for passing, at 4 points a TD, he has 64 TDs equaling 256 points, minus the 48 picks, and it's down to 160 points, still not bad, but almost 100 points lost in just picks, now realize this is in his career, and suggesting that a pick is worth -2 points as in most leagues.
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Postby Azrael » Thu Nov 30, 2006 1:04 pm

He also fails to point out how Vick is absolutely, completely worthless in TD heavy leagues, or leagues where you only get points upon meeting yardage threshholds such as 300yds passing or 100yds rushing.

The only reason he's been worth a darn this year is because he's averaging over 50% more rushing yards per game than he has for his career, which translates into almost 3 full fantasy points per game more.

Think he's going to rush for 1,200yds every year, nah, probably won't even get close to that again.
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Postby beanoX3 » Thu Nov 30, 2006 1:07 pm

Here's how Vick fares in Yahoo leagues with default scoring.
Every 50 passing yards: 1 point
Each passing TD: 6 points
Each interception thrown: -2 points
Every 20 rushing yards: 1 point
Each rushing TD: 6 points
Each 2-point conversion: 2 points
Each fumble lost: -2 points

QB rankings
2006: 6th best (134 pts) currently
2005: 12th best (156 pts)
2004: 15th best (141 pts)
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Postby The Lung » Thu Nov 30, 2006 1:20 pm

Azrael wrote:He also fails to point out how Vick is absolutely, completely worthless in TD heavy leagues, or leagues where you only get points upon meeting yardage threshholds such as 300yds passing or 100yds rushing.


Does anyone play in those kinds of leagues?

Is there really a league where a RB or QB only receives points if he exceeds 100 yards rushing? Or a WR, TE, or RB must exceed 100 yards receiving? And if he only puts up 99 yards he gets zero? And if a QB throws for 299 he gets zero? I can see bonus points for achieving the milestone, but zero points for not crossing the threshold is gotta be one of the dumbest things I've ever heard of.
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Postby portisfan24 » Thu Nov 30, 2006 1:29 pm

The thing about Vick is consistency. Vick tends to explode for 30 point weeks, and then come back with 7 the next week. I like a QB who will just put up 15-18 virtually every week.
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Postby The Lung » Thu Nov 30, 2006 2:31 pm

portisfan24 wrote:The thing about Vick is consistency. Vick tends to explode for 30 point weeks, and then come back with 7 the next week. I like a QB who will just put up 15-18 virtually every week.


He addressed that. Perhaps you missed it:

--Vick, believe it or not, is remarkably consistent. He's reached at least eight fantasy points (in my 50/50 league) in all but one game this year, and has reached double digits seven times in 11 games. Only Manning, Palmer, Brady, and Brees have fewer single-digit games, with three each.
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Postby saundman2000 » Thu Nov 30, 2006 2:43 pm

Rushing Yardage is exactly why he was a coveted fantasy prospect even in his rookie year. What's new about that argument? That's always been the draw with Vick.

I think the Falcons are not a team with an identity this season. That kind of scares me as a fantasy owner. First they were a running heavy team and then Vick became a "passer" and they ran much less. Now Vick has a tendency to scramble and I'm not sure exactly what their offensive gameplan is (maybe the Falcons don't know either)... What are they going to do next?

I'm not going to depend on it. They are not winning and so they are bound to try doing new things... That doesn't breed stability in or reliability in my opinion.
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