Monday, September 24, 2007

Case of the Monday's: Vince Young's Inevitable Downward Spiral

Monday's really piss me off. I just had 2.5 great ass days of smoking construda and watching poor n' pissed athletic black men destroy flat-footed rich white guys. Then fucking Monday comes and I'm not used to waking up at 6:45 am and my body isn't used to the continuous stream of drugs, caffeine and tobacco that I consume buffet-style from Friday afternoon through Sunday night. Plus, Monday's usually mean that the Browns lost the day before. Needless to say I'm not in the best of moods. So anyway's, today's rant will be about why Vince Young will inevitably ruin his career in a scandalous scandal.

Vince Young is money in the bank. He can do no wrong, he is a great leader and phenominal athlete. His elusiveness gives defenses fits and, while not the greatest passer, he has potential to become an effective one. However, the first 55 minutes of a football game are not where VY earns his millions, it's the last 5. In a close game, the 3 people you want to see the least at QB are Tom Brady, Peyton and VY. More often than not, Vince will do something spectacular to lead his team to victory and I can hear you saying, "bullshit, he's only in his 2nd year." Well, his body of work in college along with his body of work in the NFL so far lead one to believe this trend will not only continue, but get more and more ridiculous as he figures out the game.

However, as is the case with most QB's of a similar playing style (I do not mean black), the time in the spotlight is brief. Let's start off with the obvious stuff. He's going to get injured at some point. Look at all the great mobile QB's, they get hurt. Not in college because they're too quick, but the game is different at the pro level. There will be a shot taken at you at some point. Look at Vick or McNabb or even Mark Brunell. And at some point, his athleticism won't be what it used to and he is going to have to evolve as a passer.

Valid points yes, but the real reason I feel like VY is only a flash in the pan is because of the load borne upon him. The flamboyancy and arrogance with which he plays the game is a direct representation of his personality. Rumors swirled throughout the preseason of his immaturity and egotism, both not necessarily permanent traits, yet traits which signal that in today's world of celebrity, his status is only certain to climb. The makeup of a QB is far more scrutinized than that of an LB or WR. Your QB must have a cool head and be able to make good decisions for the best of the team. Unlike basketball where a single person can take over a game, a QB has to rely on his teammates for support in all circumstances.

Why is Tom Brady considered a great QB? In my eyes it's because he doesn't play favorites. He unites his team to aim for one singular goal and that's all the matters. The one piece that makes the Patriots tick is Tom Brady, yet he'll tell you that its everyone. He finds different recievers and doesn't care who gets the job done just as long as it gets done. That's the difference between VY and Brady. Vince, for better or for worse, gets it done by himself.

In the media saturated climate we live in, praise is heaped on VY like sawdust on some puke in a kindergarten classroom. "Vince does it without a great supporting cast." You can almost hear the talking heads crowing about how great he is every week. It seems eerily similar to a certain QB of a similar skill set from about 5 years ago. Yes Vick. The exact same things were being said about Vick circa 2002 and while he was phenominal, his downfall was brought about by an ignorance to how things really work. Vick wasn't held accountable for his actions because everyone gave him a BJ whenever he walked into a room.

You don't think that after 4 years of everyone telling Vince how great he is, he's going to gradually mature and remain humble? Everyone saying how great his game is, do you think that's going to inspire VY to get into the film room more and work on his passing? How many more games until he flies around the field trying to create something that isn't there, feeling inVincable, and then getting his leg caught awkwardly in a pile? Ego is something that has to be managed. Are Peyton and Brady egotistic? You bet. But what separates them from Vince is that they always had an obvious burning desire to get better, to achieve greatness. The greats all have this trait and you can tell just by hearing them speak.

Michael Jordan was the king of this. Tiger Woods is a modern master. The Patriots team (it must sound like I just love blowing them, but really, I can't stand them) turn a week of media bashing into complete and utter domination of a team that went 14-2 last year and has the league's MVP. Even a d-bag like Derek Jeter you can tell is just burning to get better and better. But the thing that all those guys have in common is accountability. They all held themselves personally responsible for not only making themselves better, but figuring out the intracacies of the game so that their teammates would be better (except for Tiger, he don't count). Does Vince, sleeping at home away from the team or missing meetings or storming off the field after a tantrum sound like those other guys?

I'm not saying he gets exposed in a tragic display of hubris like Vick, or even a humbling along the lines of Randall Cunningham. However, his game is full of holes, just like Vick's, just like Cunningham's, and as of right now, he doesn't seem to be doing anything to adjust. He obviously is a physical specimen, the perfect QB body, but there is only so long someone can get by on speed alone, and sooner, rather than later, that speed goes away. Can VY be one of the great NFL QB's? He has as much natural talent as John Elway and Brett Favre, but great quarterback's aren't born, they evolve, and I just don't think that Vince has that ability.

No comments: