DeAngelo Hall enjoys talking. It’s a hobby of sorts for him, and it’s resulted in some quotes that require some ‘splainin.
Example: when Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo was playing through a punctured lung last fall, Hall said he really wanted to drive his helmet into the affected area. That would hurt, and possibly knock Romo out of the game. Targeting injuries isn’t a new concept in football, but it’s typically an unspoken aspect of the game, and something that’s kept hidden. Being so brash and open with his desire to intentionally injure the opponent made Hall seem arrogant, and more importantly, dangerous.
His latest sound bite isn’t nearly as damning or insulting, unless your name is Michael Vick.
Hall appeared on 980 ESPN in Washington yesterday, and when he was asked to assess the Redskins’ upcoming season and their progress so far during offseason workouts, the conversation inevitably drifted to Robert Griffin III.
Hall played with Vick in Atlanta for three seasons, which included 2006, when Vick became the first quarterback to rush for over 1,000 yards in a season. Now he’s defending against another quarterback in practice whose style is similar to the combination of athleticism and arm strength that’s made Vick such a dynamic force. Griffin has elusive speed, and the power and length of his throws has earned him a new nickname (“The Arm“).
But Hall thinks Griffin is far ahead of Vick when he first came into the league in another crucial area for a young quarterback: brains.
From Sports Radio Interviews:
“I feel like he’s light years ahead of Michael Vick because he understands mentally what it takes to be great. Mike felt like he could go out athletically and be great. RGIII is ‘like I know athletically I’m pretty good, but I want to be mentally great. If I can be mentally great and athletically good or great then it is scary’.”
That’s a pretty polite way of calling a former teammate an idiot, DeAngelo.
We kid, of course. Hall isn’t insulting Vick’s intelligence, even though the uproar over this quote will focus on a fiery barb he threw. He’s reflecting on what we all know to be true: the young Michael Vick was erratic, and relied far too much on his legs and athletic ability instead of reading the field and utilizing his arm strength.
Simple was effective for Vick, just as it was for Tim Tebow last year. One read, one look, and if it wasn’t there, he was gone. Vick has improved since his early struggles with consistency, which is why he was able to be so dominant two years ago. But even now at the age of 31 we see glimpses of the old Vick, with his anxious feet that lead to wobbly throws and interceptions.
In Week 5 last year against the Bills Vick threw four interceptions, and in his 12 other games during the 2011 season he threw only 10. That game was an example of the bad Vick that still lingers, and it’s the QB that RG3 won’t become according to Hall because he’s “light years” ahead.
To infinity and beyond, Robert. To infinity and beyond.