Thursday, December 3, 2009

Vince Young for MVP?

Valuable: an adjective which is defined in the Merriam-Webster online dictionary as of great use or service. There are alternate definitions for the word, but that one fits my argument the best.
All you Tennessee Titans fans can come out of hiding now. The shame of an 0-6 start has been almost entirely washed away by five wins in a row. They are only two games out of the final wild card spot.
I know this is Jaguar nation that I am writing to, but sit back and look at the marvels of an NFL player who was given a second chance. What was unheard of just a month ago is now a definite possibility thanks in large part to one person. Can you take a guess as to who it is?
It is no other than the third pick of the 2006 NFL Draft, Vince Young. I threw out an idea a few days ago on my Twitter that I thought was very valid, but I was in the sever minority: Vince Young as the NFL Most Valuable Player. Yes, back to that word ‘valuable’.
Am I crazy? He’s only started five games, how valuable can someone be if they haven’t even started half the season?
That feeds into my point in a way. Young is the definition of value to his team, the numbers are simple: 0-6 without ‘VY’ as the starter, 5-0 with him in the lineup.
He doesn’t put up the flashiest numbers, but he does the same thing he did at Texas, which is produce victories. His nine straight wins as a starter clearly show that.
His effect since stepping in has been felt all over the Titans’ team. There are the people that say that Young isn’t even the most valuable player on his own team, and I disagree.
Chris Johnson has been an absolutely dynamic player and I believe he is the NFL Offensive Player of the Year in my opinion. He just isn’t the most valuable. He has played in every game for Tennessee, which means he was there for the six losses as well as the five wins.
Even if you look at the stats for Johnson, the difference in the first six games and the next five are staggering. Before the week seven bye, he had 596 yards and two touchdowns in six games. Since the bye week, he has run for 800 yards and seven touchdowns in five games. Pretty large difference if you ask me.
Head Coach Jeff Fisher probably saved Young’s career by benching him. That forced him to take a look in the mirror to see what was wrong. He has been studying like a true NFL quarterback instead of just relying on his athletic ability.
In all of the times I have watched him play, this is the first time I have seen him show consistent pocket-passing abilities. It is impressive and he can move the team down the field and not need to go to Chris Johnson at all, like he did on the final drive against Arizona.
His stat line from Sunday’s game went like this: 27-of-43 for 387 yards and threw one touchdown. He may not put up great stats all the time, but when he needs to, he certainly can.
He has made the team better not only with his maturity, but also with the natural ability that made him a first round pick originally. When he chooses to scramble now, it actually puts the defense in a predicament.
Do not think that I am putting him above players like Peyton Manning or Drew Brees, who had great games in their own right last weekend. They have also done it over the course of the whole season. I still think he needs to be in the conversation just because he is winning.
I have heard that he deserves to be NFL Comeback Player of the Year. That is without question, at least so far. What in my right mind puts him in the MVP discussion?
It is never wise to assume, and the word ‘if’ should never be used because the NFL is so unpredictable. Vince Young has done a great job to bring his team back to respectability. If (there goes that word!) he can keep up this high level of play, there’s no reason he shouldn’t be in the discussion.
As we have seen in the past five weeks, there have not been many people of great use or service like the one that has been playing great football in Nashville.

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