Michael Vick is once again at a crossroads in his career.
The unexpected rise of Nick Foles has deemed the former-No. 1 overall pick and soon-to-be 34 year old expendable by the Philadelphia Eagles. But thankfully for Vick this latest dip into the free agency pool only pertains to his contributions on the football field.
During the Bad Newz Kennels scandal I wrote about Vick and the Possible Unprecedented Fall of an American Athlete. Since then Mike served time in federal prison (mostly for charges related to illegal gambling) and has seemingly made amends for his awful mistakes. From speaking to schoolchildren about the dangers of dog fighting to lobbying Congress for stricter animal protection laws Vick has demonstrated a great deal of remorse for his crimes. His newfound maturity also helped him develop into a respected veteran and leader in the Eagles locker room. “Respected” and “leader” are two adjectives that would not describe Vick during his tumultuous tenure with the Falcons.
While all but the most ardent animal lovers have moved on from Vick’s personal transgressions many sports fans continue to be frustrated by his lack of football success. Under Andy Reid’s guidance Vick enjoyed a resurgence in 2010, completing 62% of his passes for over 3,000 yards and 21 touchdowns. Since then his CMP% and TD totals has dipped as injuries and ineffectiveness took their toll. 2013 was supposed to be a banner year for Mike as Chip Kelly’s innovative, high-octane offense was supposed to be perfectly suited for a dual-threat QB. Instead it was the lanky pocket passer Foles who emerged as an elite playmaker, throwing for a ridiculous 27-2 TD-to-INT ratio in only ten starts.
Now that Vick is clearly on the outs in Philly… where does he wind up? On MMQB Peter King opined about the usual QB-starved suspects (NY Jets, Oakland and Minnesota) along with a sleeper team in San Francisco. King wrote his article prior to the 49ers trading for Blaine Gabbert so the odds of SF also signing Vick just went from slim to none. Regardless Mike Florio at PFT reports Vick is willing to wait for the right time to sign, possibly even after the NFL Draft.
There’s no doubt that Vick will carefully choose what will likely be his last NFL team. While it’s impossible for Vick to live up to the hype that devoured him coming out of Virginia Tech there is still reason to believe his arm, legs and mind can successfully lead an NFL franchise.