Arizona Cardinals look to continue mastery of Michael Vick
Playing for both the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles, Vick has completed 56.1 percent of his passes and thrown 114 touchdowns and 78 interceptions. He's also run for 5,285 yards and scored 34 times.
In three games against the Arizona Cardinals -- two with the Falcons and one with the Eagles -- Vick has completed just 51.3 percent of his passes with no touchdowns and four interceptions. He's run for 248 yards, but has yet to reach the end zone.
To say the Cardinals have Vick's number would be a bit inaccurate, as the quarterback is 2-1 against them, but at the same time they seem to do as good a job at defending him as anyone in the NFL. Arizona did win the last meeting, as Vick completed just 16-of-34 passes for 128 yards and two interceptions.
"What happened last year is last year, so I don't go back and look at all that," Cardinals defensive lineman Darnell Dockett said. "They've got a high-powered offense, a bunch of playmakers, a great quarterback.
"We've just got to play a perfect game to beat them."
It's understandable that Dockett would not want to ruffle any Eagles' feathers -- pun intended -- with his comments, but if there's a secret to defending Vick it would appear the Cardinals have figured it out.
"It can be very difficult," linebacker Daryl Washington said of stopping a quarterback like Vick. "When you have a mobile quarterback who can run around and extend plays it can be a big problem."
One way to try and solve the problem can be to put a "spy" on Vick. The idea is that someone -- usually a linebacker -- will follow Vick, making sure he's around in case the quarterback decides to take off and run.
"I think spying is a good key, keeping an eye on him instead of being able to contain him," Washington said. "Even if the pocket breaks down and one guy loses contain we still have a spy there to make sure Vick doesn't run too much.
"We'll definitely have our eyes on him."
Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said facing Vick certainly represents a challenge, but the trick is just sticking with what works for you.
"You've got to focus on what you're trying to get done and you have to do it well," he said.
At the very least, the Cardinals will call on their experience from the season's first week, when they faced off against Seattle's Russell Wilson. Like Vick, Wilson is adept at making plays with his feet as well as his arm.
The Cardinals held Wilson to just 153 yards through the air and another 20 on the ground.
"Even when you do your best job of trying to contain him and keep him in the pocket and take the best angle as the outside rusher, he still can beat you to the outside," defensive lineman Vonnie Holliday said. "So it's going to be a collaborative effort. It's going to take everybody."
Arizona Sports' Craig Grialou contributed to this report
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