Stats & Info: Vince Young

Kirby Lee/US PresswireMarshawn Lynch (right) finished with 123 yards against defensive fronts of eight or more, including 51 yards after contact.
It was a game the Philadelphia Eagles had to have. Instead, they allowed a season-high in rush yards (174) as the Seahawks’ Marshawn Lynch continually knocked them backwards en route to a 31-14 Seattle win.

Not that Philadelphia didn’t try to stop him.

The Eagles kept eight or more defenders in the box on 17 of Lynch’s 22 attempts, but to no avail. Lynch finished with 123 yards against defensive fronts of eight or more, including 51 yards after contact.

Both of his touchdowns came against eight-man fronts.

Overall, Lynch ran 22 times for 148 yards and two touchdowns. It was the second-highest rushing total of his career. He’s now scored a touchdown in eight straight games.

It was Lynch's fourth 100-yard game of the season with all of them coming in his last five outings. It was also the third multi-touchdown game of his career.

He accumulated a season-best 75 yards after contact. Since Week 9, he has led the NFL in yards after contact.

The Eagles did get a strong performance out of their own backfield, courtesy of LeSean McCoy.

McCoy carried 17 times for 84 yards and a touchdown and had four catches for 49 yards with a score. It was the third time in his career (and second time this season) McCoy had a rushing and receiving touchdown in the same game.

But Vince Young threw a career-high four interceptions, one of which was returned 77 yards for a score by David Hawthorne. Three of Young’s interceptions came on throws of 15 or more yards downfield.

He now has eight interceptions this season on such passes, tied with the Redskins’ Rex Grossman for the NFL lead. Six of Young's eight downfield interceptions have been underthrown.

Overall, the Eagles turned it over four times; they lead the NFL with 29 turnovers. Philadelphia had 25 turnovers all of last season.

The Eagles have dropped two straight and four of their last five. At 4-8, they are assured of their fourth non-winning season in 13 years under Andy Reid.

Is Tim Tebow the new Vince Young?

November, 29, 2011

Christopher Hanewinckel/US Presswire
Tim Tebow's performance in his first nine starts is reminiscent of Vince Young's early career with the Titans in 2006.
On Sunday against the San Diego Chargers, Tim Tebow recorded his fourth game-winning drive in the fourth quarter or overtime, the second-most by a quarterback in his first nine starts, according to Elias. The Denver Broncos have won four games in a row and are just one game out of playoff position.

It’s reminiscent of a performance five years ago, when Vince Young took over as starter for the Tennessee Titans and also engineered several comeback victories early on. Young, however, could not propel the Titans into the postseason that year, as the team finished 8-8 and tied for second place in the AFC South.

Despite the similar trends, Tebow’s first nine starts have arguably been considerably more impressive than Young’s. His four game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or later are one more than Young had in his first nine starts, and he also has the advantage in passing yards, touchdowns and rushing yards.

Young’s calling card early in his career was that he led his team to wins despite statistics that were not among the league’s best, and Tebow certainly fits that bill. However, Tebow has him beat in the win column too. Young went 5-4 in his first nine starts; Tebow has gone 6-3, including 5-1 this season.

Though Tebow has received much hype and praise during the Broncos recent playoff push, Denver’s defense deserves significant credit for the five wins under Tebow. In those games, the Broncos have allowed an average of 15 points and have held opponents to a third-down conversion rate of just 26 percent.

Young received far less help from his defense in 2006. Through his first nine starts, the Titans allowed an average of 371 yards per game, the second-worst mark in the league during that span, and recorded just seven sacks, the fewest in the NFL in those nine weeks.

Highs and lows for Week 6 Total QBR

October, 17, 2011
Week 6 was a week of extremes as six quarterbacks who have played in at least four games this year set season-highs in QBR while five set season-lows. Rookies Andy Dalton, Cam Newton and Blaine Gabbert set career-highs.

Ryan and Rodgers lead the pack

Matt Ryan:

• Season-high 92.5 Total QBR

• Major cause: Two defensive pass interference calls in the end zone setting up 1st and goals for the Falcons. Ryan contributed 4.4 clutch-weighted expected points to the Falcons on penalties, the most in a single game for any quarterback this season.

• Ryan was also 3-3 for 53 yards on third downs in the fourth quarter. All three went for first downs.

• Since 2008, Ryan has 12 games with a QBR of 90 or higher, second most in the league.

Aaron Rodgers:

• 91.9 Total QBR, second highest of the season

• Major cause: In the first half Rodgers was 11-15 for 234 yards and three touchdowns. Despite Rodgers being unable to lead the Packers to any second half points, his superb first half gave Green Bay a 24-0 cushion which was never threatened.

Manning and Newton with season-highs

Eli Manning:

• Season-high 91.4 Total QBR

• Major cause: Stayed away from negative plays. This was Manning’s first game since Week 12 of last season without a sack, interception or fumble.

Cam Newton:

• Season-high 80.6 Total QBR

• Major cause: Scrambling. Newton added 8.1 clutch-weighted expected points with his scrambling, the most in a single game since Vince Young in Week 11 of the 2009 season. A large chunk of this came on Newton’s rush TD on a 3rd and 5 from the Falcons 14 yard line with the Panthers trailing by four in the third quarter.

Romo and Brady both above average, but not much more

Tony Romo:

• 62.6 Total QBR

• Major cause: It was a mixed bag for Romo. His biggest play of the game came on a 17-yard scramble on a 2nd and 13 in the 4th quarter with the game tied. That drive ended with a Cowboys field goal to take a 16-13 lead. However, Romo struggled on third downs all day, completing only two first down passes with an INT on seven attempts.

Tom Brady:

• Season-low 56.8 Total QBR

• Major cause: Like Romo, it was a mixed bag for Brady. His touchdown to Aaron Hernandez is what most people will remember (and was his biggest play of the game); however, Brady did not complete a single pass that traveled more than 12 yards in the air. This is the first time Brady did not complete a pass of that length since Week 4 of last season.

• Entering the final drive Brady’s QBR was 30.6, so the fact he was able to bring it all the way up to 56.8 on one drive was impressive.

For more information about Total QBR, go to

Eagles have enviable backup option for Vick

September, 22, 2011

Chris McGrath/Getty ImagesIf Michael Vick doesn't return Sunday against the New York Giants, Andy Reid can take solace in the fact that he has one of the top backup quarterbacks in the NFL according to Total QBR: Vince Young.

The Philadelphia Eagles are optimistic Michael Vick will be able to return Sunday against the New York Giants after suffering a concussion against the Atlanta Falcons. Vick returned to the practice field Thursday, one day after his replacement against Atlanta, Mike Kafka, took all of the first-team snaps in practice. That same day, newly acquired backup Vince Young returned to practice after suffering a hamstring injury in the preseason.

Kafka, drafted in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL draft, did not see any regular-season action for the Eagles in 2010. That was one of the reasons Philadelphia signed Young as a backup QB.

While we don’t know who will start for Philadelphia on Sunday – signs point to Vick – we can analyze just how lucky the Eagles are to have Young as a backup.

As a refresher, Total QBR is a quarterback rating that takes into account all of a quarterback's contributions (passing, rushing, sacks, fumbles, penalties) to his team's scoring and winning and summarizes them into one number on a 0-100 scale, on which 50 is average.

Young’s Total QBR of 64.2 from 2008-10 is only a slight drop-off from Vick's (65.9). In that span, Young ranked 11th among the 75 quarterbacks with at least 100 action plays. Obviously, 100 action plays is a relatively small sample size, but since we are dealing with backup quarterbacks, there has to be some cutoff regarding what can be determined as an appropriate minimum value for assessing backups.

There are 14 teams in the NFL that have a backup with at least 100 action plays over the last three years. Among those teams, the Eagles have the fourth-smallest drop-off in Total QBR from starter to backup in moving from Vick to Young. The three teams with a "more favorable" backup situation feature three young QBs who are either playing very well (Ryan Fitzpatrick) or are considered the future of the franchise (Matthew Stafford and Colt McCoy).

A quick glance at the QBR leaderboard from the previous three seasons shows that Young actually rates higher than 22 other starting quarterbacks. That group includes Eli Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Flacco, Josh Freeman, Matthew Stafford, Sam Bradford, Kevin Kolb and Mark Sanchez.

For exclusive video, stories and blogs about quarterbacks from every level of competition, check out ESPN's "Year of the Quarterback" page.
Every team in the NFL has played at least eight games. Each year since 2000, there has been at least one team (27 overall) that was .500 or worse at the halfway point of the season and made the playoffs. In fact, in each of the past four seasons, at least three teams started 4-4 or worse and rebounded to make the playoffs.

Currently, there are 17 teams that are no better than .500.
Michael Vick

• Not only is Michael Vick on the verge of passing Steve Young for the second-most rushing yards by a quarterback in NFL history, but his passing numbers have been spectacular. He has the highest passer rating in the NFL on attempts between 11-20 yards. No one else in the NFL has a passer rating above 118. And on deep throws (at least 21 yards), his 120.0 passer rating is currently third behind Vince Young and Ben Roethlisberger.

• From the Elias Sports Bureau: Terrell Owens has 41 receptions for 618 yards and seven touchdowns in the last five games, all of which have been Bengals losses. Seven other players in NFL history have had at least 40 catches for 600 yards and seven touchdowns in a five-game span, but Owens is the only one who's done it on a team that lost all five games.

• More from the Elias Sports Bureau: The Cleveland Browns' Colt McCoy is the only quarterback whose first three starts all came against former Super Bowl winning quarterbacks. (The Browns lost to Ben Roethlisberger in McCoy's first start, then beat Drew Brees and Tom Brady in his next two starts).

• Peyton Hillis is averaging a league-leading 9.3 yards per rush when running to the right this season; however, only 12 percent of Hillis’ rush attempts have been to the right side. Two-thirds of his carries have been up the middle, where he’s averaging four yards per rush.

• The Tennessee Titans' Chris Johnson will play his 40th game on Sunday against the Miami Dolphins. Johnson has rushed for 3,955 yards and averaged 5.03 yards per carry. The only players in NFL history to rush for 4,000 yards and average at least five yards a carry in their first 40 games are Jim Brown, Clinton Portis and Adrian Peterson.

• Even when he’s isn’t carrying the ball, Johnson has a huge impact on opposing defenses. Vince Young has a perfect passer rating (158.3) on play-action throws of at least 15 yards this season. On throws downfield of at least 15 yards when he does not use play action, Young’s passer rating is just 55.4.
Sidney Rice

• Last season, Sidney Rice was the Minnesota Vikings leading receiver on passes thrown outside the field numbers, catching 39-of-59 passes and four of the Vikings 12 touchdowns. In eight games thus far, Minnesota has not had an outside threat, posting just three touchdowns on 92 targets.

• The Denver Broncos are the only team that does not have a rushing play of at least 20 yards this season; conversely, the Pittsburgh Steelers are the only team that has yet to allow a 20-yard running play. The Steelers opponent this week, the Patriots, have four players who have had at least one 20-yard running play this season.
The Jaguars' 30-3 loss to the Titans Monday was Jacksonville's worst home loss in team history. It was the Titans' largest margin of victory on the road since a 37-point win at Detroit in 2008. Jacksonville has been outscored 96-19 in its three losses this season. After four giveaways and no takeaways Monday, the Jaguars have a -7 turnover margin, second worst in the league behind the 49ers -8.

• Both starting quarterbacks -- Vince Young and David Garrard -- left early in the game with injuries forcing Kerry Collins and Trent Edwards to get considerable playing time. Collins made the most of it completing 11 passes for 110 yards and a touchdown. That gives Collins 3,307 career completions moving him past Hall of Famer Dan Fouts for 10th place all-time.

• Chris Johnson ran for 111 yards on Monday, giving him at least 100 rushing yards in each of his last eight road games, which is the second-longest such streak in NFL history. Barry Sanders had a 10-game streak over the 1996 and 1997 seasons. Entering Monday night, Johnson had been tied for the second-longest streak with Marcus Allen, who had a seven-game streak with the Los Angeles Raiders in 1985 and 1986. The last road game in which Johnson didn’t run for 100 yards was in Jacksonville last October 4.
A preview of the Monday Night Football game between the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars (coverage begins at 7 ET, ESPN).

Vince Young
Vince Young is 4-2 in six starts against Jacksonville, but the Jaguars have limited him in those games to only 3.2 yards per carry on 40 runs. And Young's passing numbers are pedestrian: 56.7 percent completion percentage, 5.45 yards per pass, four touchdowns, eight interceptions and a passer rating of 58.7. According to The Elias Sports Bureau, Young's passer rating is the lowest for any quarterback against Jacksonville in Jaguars history (minimum: 150 pass attempts).

Other notes from The Elias Sports Bureau:
• Young has passed for 200 yards or more in a game only 12 times in his career, but he may be poised to do so tonight. The Jaguars have allowed at least 200 yards passing in each of their last 13 home games, tying an NFL record. The only other team that's allowed at least 200 yards passing in 13 straight home games was the Houston Texans, from 2003 to 2005.

• Rashean Mathis has six interceptions in 13 games against Tennessee: two off Steve McNair, one off Matt Mauck and three off Young. Mathis is the only NFL player with three picks off Young.

Nate Washington
• Nate Washington has a touchdown catch in each of his last four regular-season games against Jacksonville: Two with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2007 and 2008, and in each game with the Titans last season. Three other players (Carl Pickens, Jermaine Lewis and Eric Moulds) have caught touchdown passes in each of four straight games against Jacksonville; no player has done it in five consecutive games.

• Titans' running back Chris Johnson has run for 100 yards or more in each of his last seven road games, matching the second-longest such streak in NFL history. Barry Sanders had a 10-game streak over 1996 and 1997, and Marcus Allen had a seven-game streak with the Los Angeles Raiders in 1985-86.

• The Titans defense had six sacks against the Denver Broncos two weeks ago and six more in their win over the Dallas Cowboys last week. The last NFL team to produce at least six sacks in each of two straight games had been the New York Giants, early in 2008. Only one team in the past 20 years did that in each of three consecutive games: 1999 St. Louis Rams did it during their 13-3 regular season en route to beating the Titans in Super Bowl XXXIV.

• Barring a tie in tonight's game, there will be 13 teams in sole possession or tied for first place in their divisions. That will be the highest total in any season since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger. The next-highest total was 12 teams with at least a share of first place through six weeks in 2008.

• And last, but certainly not least, the team that has won the coin toss on Monday Night Football this season is 6-0.
1. Alabama (18 straight games) and Nebraska (12 straight) are each carrying long streaks of allowing 21 points or fewer. How impressive is that? No other FBS team has a streak longer than four games. Two other teams, Rutgers and West Virginia, have done it in every game this season. But both of those teams have played four games and their streak does not extend into last season.

2. Urban Meyer and Les Miles both started their SEC coaching careers in 2005, and Meyer is one of the few FBS coaches with a better record than Miles since that time. When you factor in the 2007 BCS title, Meyer and Mack Brown are the only two coaches who have been inarguably more successful than Miles during this stretch.

NOTE: Boise State's Chris Petersen began in 2006, so he doesn't make the list.

3. It's not often that Alabama and San Jose State are mentioned in the same sentence, but that is the case this week. The Spartans will join the Crimson Tide as the only FBS teams to have played four ranked opponents after this weekend. San Jose State travels to No. 21 Nevada this week after having already lost to ranked teams Alabama, Wisconsin and Utah.

4. Denard Robinson became just the second player with two 200-yard rushing and passing games in the same season, joining Vince Young in 2005. It was Young's final season and he led the Longhorns to the national title. Robinson's numbers through 5 games are better than Young's that season.

5. On Saturday, Georgia will attempt to avoid its first five-game, single-season losing streak since 1953. Pretty amazing considering that every other current SEC team has had at least one such losing streak since then, including some perennial powerhouses. A bit of trivia … other than Georgia, which current SEC schools have the fewest five-game, single-season losing streaks since 1953?

Answer: Auburn and Tennessee with one each.

Pittsburgh Steelers looking perfect

September, 28, 2010
• The Pittsburgh Steelers are one of three teams with a perfect record this season, and while their defense has been impressive, it has also taken advantage of some young quarterbacks. These passers have faced 3-4 defenses before, but are not familiar with Defensive Coordinator Dick LeBeau's system. Matt Ryan (Atlanta Falcons), Vince Young (Tennessee Titans) and Josh Freeman (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) had never started against Pittsburgh until this season, and none of their offenses managed to score a touchdown when they were at the helm.

• The Steelers, Chicago Bears and Kansas City Chiefs are the lone 3-0 teams in the league. It's the fewest number of teams to start 3-0 since 2001 (3).

• And it’s worth repeating if you haven’t heard: only 5 teams – the 1981 New York Jets (0-3), 1982 Buccaneers (0-3), 1992 San Diego Chargers (0-4), 1995 Detroit Lions (0-3) and 1998 Buffalo Bills (0-3) – have rebounded to make the playoffs following an 0-3 start or worse. Five teams would like to add themselves to that list this season: the Lions, Carolina Panthers, San Francisco 49ers, Buffalo Bills and Cleveland Browns.

• Since the beginning of the 2008 season, the Lions (2-33) and St. Louis Rams (4-31) are a combined 6-64, but three of those wins have come against the Washington Redskins. Last season in Week 3, the Lions snapped their 19-game overall losing streak with a 19-14 win over Washington. Sunday (Week 3), the Rams snapped a 10-game overall losing streak and a 14-game home losing streak with a 30-16 victory over the Redskins.

• Speaking of not-so-special teams, the Chargers have been just that in the early stages of the season. On Sunday, Seattle Seahawks KR Leon Washington returned a pair of kickoffs for touchdowns, and in Week 1, Chiefs rookie PR Dexter McCluster took a punt return the distance in Kansas City’s Monday night win.

• In fact, the Chargers are only the second team in NFL history to allow three kickoff and/or punt return touchdowns in the first three weeks, and the first since the 1951 Los Angeles Rams.

• The New York Giants are 4-10 in their last 14 games dating back to 2009, and are doing it with turnovers. In 2008, the G-Men tied an NFL record for a 16-game season with just 13 turnovers (2008 Miami Dolphins). And during last season’s 5-0 start, New York turned the ball over just five times. But in their last 14 games, they’ve committed 36 turnovers, including 10 so far this season, second-most in the league.

• While part of Buffalo's 30 points included a kickoff return for a score, the concern regarding the New England Patriots defense is real. The Pats have given up 82 points in three games, including 53 in the second half. If this pace continues, their 17.7 second-half PPG allowed and 27.3 overall PPG allowed would easily be the most under Bill Belichick.