Going into the Giants game, Andy Reid and Marty Mornhinweg knew they had to change something. Through the first three games, Michael Vick had been inconsistent at best: holding on to the ball too long, taking big hits, making ill-advised passes, and turning the ball over 11 times. They had to simplify the game for Vick, give him quicker reads — especially against the Giants' fearsome pass rush.
And the coaches did exactly that. I went through and highlighted 5 plays from the All-22 coaches tape that showed the same concept over and over: a package of short routes in the middle of the field, slants and buttonhooks and crossing routes. In each play, I circled the Eagles receivers and marked Vick's target in yellow. As you will see, Vick always has 2 or 3 easy reads right in the middle.
Rather than waiting for longer routes to develop or even having to anticipate players getting open, all Vick had to do on these routes was take a three-step drop and look in the short middle of the field. He had an choice of simple targets, and could choose the one that was most open. Pitch and catch.
Check them out below: