But there's another significant difference between those Final Four quarterbacks and Vick besides the fact that they managed to answer the bell every week and he didn't. They also played much better than Vick.
All four had better touchdown-to-interception ratios than Vick. All four had better interception percentages. And Flacco was the only one of the four with a lower passer rating than Vick.
The bottom line is Vick didn't play well last season. You can bitch all you want about Juan Castillo and the team's defensive problems much of the year. But if Vick had played at the same level as Eli in his 13 starts, the Eagles easily - easily - would've made the playoffs.
He finished 26th in the league in third-down passing and 25th in fourth-quarter passing and 23rd in interception percentage. He completed just 52.5 percent of his passes in the red zone and had six red-zone turnovers.
In the seven games the Eagles won with Vick as their starter, he threw nine touchdowns, three interceptions and had a solid 95.4 passer rating. In the six games they lost with him - six TD passes, 10 interceptions and a 72.4 rating.
That can't happen again.
"This isn't anything that Michael doesn't know. But we've got to eliminate the turnovers on offense," said Reid, whose team coughed the ball up 38 times last season, the most by an Eagles team since 1999, Reid's first season in Philly.
"Not just Michael. But he's the field general, so he's in charge of that. He'll work on that. Turnovers kill you in this league. Look at New England last year. Their defense wasn't as good as what they wanted. But they eliminated turnovers [just 17 giveaways, the third fewest in the NFL] and they did well."
The 4 1/2-month lockout has been a convenient excuse for a lot of things that didn't go well last season, including Vick's struggles. There's no doubt that he would have benefited from an offseason of field and classroom work with offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg and quarterbacks coach Doug Pederson. And there's no doubt that he would have had been able to gain a more solid grasp of new offensive line coach Howard Mudd's protection scheme.
Vick was given a lot of new responsibility last season as far as identifying and calling protections. Vick insisted that he was comfortable doing it. But it clearly was an adjustment for him. And even though the offensive line did a good job of protecting him most of the year, Vick never seemed comfortable in the pocket, often looking to run even when his pocket still was intact.
"From a coaching standpoint, we probably gave him a little too much too soon protection-responsibilitywise," Reid said. "You can't take quite as much as we did early and do that with a guy. Even though he's been in the league as long as he has, it was a different [protection] scheme. If I had to go back on it, I would have backed up and just gradually fed him the stuff.
"You're talking about a very intelligent guy. Very intelligent. But you can't dump years and years of things on the table and expect him to go and perform."
That won't be an excuse this year. While the new rules in the CBA have taken an ax to the number of offseason workouts and the time coaches can spend with players, there's still ample time for Vick to learn what he needs to learn and refine his game so that 2012 isn't a repeat of 2011.
"The thing he can do now, he can go through and look at the tape, that's what he can do," Reid said. "You can't sit in there as a coach with him [yet], but he can go through and evaluate the tape and do the little cut-ups on the machine and all that. That's the first phase here, which is really no different than it was before.
"Then, starting on April 16, he can meet with the coach in the classroom and then you get into Phase Two when a coach can work with him on the field and the classroom. I don't think it'll be a problem for him. As a matter of fact, I think it'll be a positive for him and where he's at in his career."
Mention Vick's 14 interceptions last season to Reid and he says picks never really have been an issue for the quarterback.
"That hasn't been his M.O. in his career," he said. "It was last year, particularly early and in the red zone. But it's not what Michael's been in the past."
That's not necessarily true. While last season was the first time in his career that Vick threw more than 13 interceptions, his interception percentage, with the exception of 2010 when he had just six picks in 372 attempts after taking over for Kevin Kolb, always has been high. His last 3 years in Atlanta, he finished 18th, 22nd and 26th in interception percentage. In the five seasons he's attempted more than 350 passes, his interception percentage has been lower than 3.3 just twice.
"I felt that, as everybody gelled, as he got used to the new protection, he played better," Reid said. "There still were too many [interceptions], too many tipped balls and all that stuff. We've got to settle down. He can see some things better. I'm just talking about quarterback, but there were other turnovers, too, and other reasons, and he's aware of that."
He's aware that it's not enough just to stay healthy this season. He also needs to play better.
Contact Paul Domowitch at firstname.lastname@example.org.