Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Ever since Michael Vick’s incarceration in 2007, and the drafting of Matt Ryan in 2008, Atlanta fans have debated endlessly about who the better player is. The argument has brought heated conversations, and sadly, even racial innuendo. The fight still rages on today, with some Falcons “fans” not supporting our current Quarterback. Its a sad thing to see, when Atlanta plays the Eagles, and there are more Vick supporters than actual Falcons fans in the Georgia Dome. In this article I want to break down career stats of Matt Ryan and Michael Vick, and really try to show some of those “fans” why Atlanta has the best Quarterback under center that it’s ever had in the history of the franchise.
Throughout his career as an Atlanta Falcon, Vick only played a full 16 games in one season. To give a clear stat, I will only count seasons in which Vick played in at least 15 games (02′, 04′, 05′, and 06′). In those years, (per NFL.com) Vick passed for 2936, 2313, 2412, and 2474 yards respectively. Throwing those together, Vick was good for an average of 2,534 passing yards per season. To Vick’s benefit, let us also calculate rushing yards to compensate for the times Vick scrambled instead of passed. In the four years mentioned, Vick rushed for 777, 902, 597, and 1039 yards. This brings Vick’s total yardage per year to 3,363. With 84 touchdowns, and 46 interceptions in those 4 seasons, Vick averaged 21 all purpose touchdowns per year. Vick was one of the game’s most exciting players to watch, but as you can see, Vick’s dual-threat abilities was still not enough to consistently compete in the National Football League.
A pure pocket-passer, Ryan entered the league with a team with expectations as low as the floor beneath you. Since his rookie season in 2008, Ryan has 23 game winning drives under his belt, which bests Vick’s career stat of 17 (per pro-football-reference.com). In his career, Ryan has started every single game except for his 2009 season in which he missed 2. Since that is still very close to a full season, we will count 2009 in the stats. In 6 years, (per NFL.com) Ryan has passed for 3440, 2916, 3705, 4177, 4719, and 4515 yards. Take those numbers, and you have 3,912 passing yards on average each season, compared to Vick’s 3,363 all purpose yards. Ryan’s 153 touchdowns and 77 interceptions blow Vicks TD-INT ratio out of the water. Also, compared to Vick’s 21, Ryan has averaged 26 touchdowns per year without a rushing threat. To add more to the bloodshed, Ryan’s 63.7 career completion percentage out does Vick’s 56.2%.
Even with better wideouts around him, Matt has shown why he is the best Quarterback to ever don the red and black. His consistent play is the number 1 reason why Atlanta had 5 consecutive winning seasons from 2008-12. If you still do not believe in the BC product, and would like to have Vick back, just take a quick look at how Michael is doing in Philly.