MARTY MORNHINWEG just wants to make sure, as everyone hyperventilates over the four interceptions, that we all understand what Michael Vick accomplished on that 91-yard, 16-play touchdown drive that finally, belatedly beat the Browns on Sunday.
Yes, the picks were disturbing and deflating. We'll spend the week debating whether it was Vick's rust from a lack of preseason work that caused him to hold the ball too long, to stare down receivers and make throws several beats after he should have, or whether he's just that guy now, easy for a savvy defense to read and to bait when you've knocked him back on his heels a little, made him unsure of his protection.
Somehow, Vick mustered that last drive, when, as he noted afterward, he was even starting to get down on Michael Vick. Watching it again Monday, it was apparent how much Vick just willed the team downfield. Third-and-10 from the Browns' 32, and he ran, lowering his head and bulling through a tackle trying to get the final yard he needed for the first down. Vick fumbled but got the ball back even as a defender grabbed his right arm to keep him from recovering.
There were times earlier in the day when Vick made no-chance throws into coverage, but not on the final drive; two of his end-zone passes this time were close to becoming picks, but in both cases the play could as easily have been an Eagles touchdown; Vick had to hit tight windows, in a hostile stadium, carrying about 55 minutes' worth of frustration on his back.
"A late-fourth-quarter, come-from-behind win, that's harder to do, going through a game like Mike went through - [granted,] he put himself, and our football team, in that position - than it is when it's 31-28 and you've thrown three touchdowns and things are rolling pretty good for you," Mornhinweg said Monday. "That is a hard thing that Mike just did, against a pretty good defense."
Mornhinweg and Eagles coach Andy Reid obviously did not correctly gauge how much of a problem Vick's lack of preseason work would be, how scrambly the offensive line would look early on. After spending the offseason preaching about limiting turnovers, the Eagles turned the ball over on their first two possessions - a LeSean McCoy fumble and Vick's first interception.
"That's my responsibility," Mornhinweg said of the early chaos. "We've got to do some things there. That's not the first time. Might not be the last, though I sure hope it is."