Player Points - Vince Young
By Chase Stuart
June 29th, 2010

Vince Young isn't going to be posting big time passing totals anytime soon. In 39 career starts, he's only thrown for over 300 yards in two games, and has only hit the 250-yard mark once more. If Young is going to have significant fantasy value, he's going to need to contribute significantly on the ground. As a rookie, he had one rush attempt for every 5.3 pass attempts. In 2007, his second year in the league, he rushed once for every 5.1 passes (he only started one game in 2008). But last year, Young rushed only once for every 5.7 passes. While Young made huge strides as a passer in '09, his fantasy production stayed level because he turned into more of a passing quarterback. That may good for his development, but it would probably be bad for his fantasy numbers.

There are 12 quarterbacks since the merger to rush for 500 yards in a season: Michael Vick, Bobby Douglass, Randall Cunningham, Steve McNair, Donovan McNabb, Daunte Culpepper, Vince Young, Steve Grogan, Kordell Stewart, Steve Young, Greg Landry and Rich Gannon. I recorded how many runs and passes each quarterback had during each season of his career. The results, below:

Age
#QB
QB Rsh
QB Att
Ratio
21
1
31
113
4.6
22
8
244
1058
5.3
23
11
475
2013
5.2
24
12
761
3293
5.3
25
12
980
4490
5.6
26
12
879
4071
5.6
27
10
585
3076
6.3
28
10
326
1971
7.0
29
10
389
2275
6.8
30
10
293
2093
8.1
31
10
333
2356
8.1
32
9
238
2195
10.2
33
7
227
2285
11.1
34
6
152
1463
10.6
35
5
180
1383
8.7
36
4
132
1366
11.3
37
4
147
1352
10.2
38
4
33
418
13.7
39
1
5
68
14.6

At age 22, the quarterbacks had a little over 5 passes per rush. That stayed relatively flat for the next few seasons, but at age 27 the quarterbacks were passing 6 times per carry; the next year it was up to 8 passes per rush, and by age 32, it was 10 passes per rush. Young turned 27 years old this past May, making him already entering the second half of his career as a rushing quarterback. Several players still had big rushing totals at this age, and Randall Cunningham set a career high with 942 rushing yards during his age 27 season. But as every rushing quarterback ages, he runs less frequently, and Young already began to show this in 2009. As long as Chris Johnson is in the lineup, there's even less of a need for Young to beat defenders with his legs. Young was such a prolific double threat in college, that it still seems reasonable to expect him to reach his potential -- he rushed for 998 yards, 1,079 yards and 1,050 yards in his three season at Texas, and recorded double digit touchdowns on the ground in each of those years. Then, as a rookie, he gained 552 yards on the ground in just 13 starts, while averaging 6.7 yards per carry. But he struggled in '07 as a passer, and sat on the bench in 2008; last year he didn't enter the lineup until mid-season and became more of a passer. For fantasy purposes, Young needs to be a monster on the ground to be a quality fantasy starting quarterback. While I always thought the potential was there, I now fear that his best chance may be behind him.

Questions, suggestions and comments are always welcome to stuart@footballguys.com.