Many would have you believe that Donovan McNabb and Michael Vick are prime time performers, always ready to dazzle when all eyes are on them. Their track record on Monday Night Football doesn’t necessarily support that theory.
Vick is 3-1 in his career on Monday nights, while McNabb is 10-6. However, McNabb is 4-5 in his last nine appearances. Their statistics on Monday nights also show drop offs that go pretty much across the board.
Vick has a passer rating of 49 in his four appearances, having completed just 47-of-103 passes for 640 yards, one touchdown and five interceptions. Vick has never connected on more than 12 throws in a game on Monday night.
While he’s run for 181 yards and five touchdowns on 32 attempts, Vick has also fumbled six times on Monday Night Football and lost two of them. When you combine his passing and running, Vick has accounted for six Monday night touchdowns, but seven turnovers.
Vick’s Monday Night Football average is 12-of-26 for 160 yards, .25 touchdowns and 1.25 interceptions with 8 rushes for 45 yards and 1.25 touchdowns with 1.5 fumbles and .5 fumbles lost. Those aren’t particularly impressive numbers.
McNabb has seen less of a drop off, but it’s still evident, particularly in his turnovers. McNabb has a Monday night passer rating of 86.6 in his last nine appearances between 2004 and 2009. His overall rating in that time span was 92.2. McNabb threw eight touchdowns and four interceptions in those Monday night games, but his ratio was 2.6-to-1 in non-Monday night games during that time span.
McNabb ran 24 times in those nine games, racking up 113 yards and three touchdowns, but fumbling eight times and losing four of them. Not the kind of ball protection you usually associate with one of the least intercepted quarterbacks in NFL history. Overall, McNabb’s average Monday night performance during the last nine appearances is 19-of-31 for 229 yards, .88 touchdowns and .44 interceptions with 2.66 carries for 12.5 yards, .33 touchdowns, .88 fumbles and .44 fumbles lost.
Both Vick and McNabb have spoken this week about enjoying the big stage, but perhaps they’ve tried a bit too hard to impress their peers on Monday nights, based on the aforementioned statistics. Of course, this is the first Monday night appearance for the “new Michael Vick,” who hasn’t turned the ball over in an Eagles jersey. McNabb meanwhile comes off a late-game benching, hoping for an inspired performance to prove his naysayers wrong.
Perhaps the extra motivation for both players will override their recent history on Monday nights. If not, the defenses will shine in this NFC East showdown.
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