Michael Vick: Difference Maker or Distraction?
Posted by Trumpetbdw (1994 days ago)
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Keep in mind that the following is a breakdown of the football side of the Vick signing. I am not here to condone, or to ignore the issues at hand, but simply want to look at this from a football point of view.
With no dog in the fight (pardon the pun) in that I live in NFC East territory, but have no affiliation or animosity toward any NFC East team, I found one headline on profootballtalk.com that cracked me up a bit... "Giants fear Vick". But the question is, should they? That's what I'm here to figure out. Truth is, Vick won't be nearly the distraction everyone thinks he will be, as he doesn't carry the same divisive attitude that TO brought with him. In fact, it might take the pressure off of the rest of the players who've already been told by ownership that nothing less than a Super Bowl will be accepted.
The big question is, will Andy Reid be capable of using Vick properly? Since they ran "Slash" plays last year (everyone calls it Wildcat, I refuse to cop out) Incorporating him into the mix could be lethal. So is Reid creative enough, and is Vick still an explosive force? If the answers to those two questions are yes and yes, look out.
So if Reid indeed has that creativity gene, of which time will tell, AND if Vick is still explosive, of which time will tell, then the Eagles could be more of an unstoppable force than they were when TO came in and gave them the weapon McNabb hasn't had before or since. And of course, that move led to a Super Bowl appearance.
And another thing. So many Iggles fans are getting bent out of shape because you don't need another athletic, strong-armed, inaccurate passer on your team. I'd argue that it's EXACTLY what you need. Think about it, McNabb and Kolb couldn't be more different, so if/when Kevin Kolb is forced to come into the game, as much as no one in the organization would like to admit it, the offense completely changes. Obviously this won't be the case early in the season, but late in the season, it is possible, not likely, but certainly possible that the offense wouldn't lose a step if Vick had to replace an injured or ineffective McNabb. If anything, with Vick's running ability, it might even make them more dangerous. Of course, if that scenario plays out, it would bring up the even more interesting issue of the 5+ million dollar team option on Vick for next year, and how that would impact McNabb, who may or may not take things a little too personally at times.
That last point directly leads to the downside. Because while TO did give the Eagles the swagger it took to get over the hump and finally get to a Super Bowl (remember, he was hurt, and didn't contribute in any of the playoff games leading up to the big game) he also became a nightmare following the game and destroyed their chances the next season. And while Vick is not the same type of personality that TO is, the McNabb factor looms. If Vick has to step in for McNabb, or if they are successful in spite of McNabb and because of Vick, then the TO-like problems could creep in. Because nothing derails the chemistry of a team with already questionable-at-best leadership faster than a good old-fashioned quarterback controversy. So maybe the Eagles are setting themselves up for failure.
So in the end, should the Giants, or the Cowboys, or the rest of the contenders in the NFC be afraid? Time will tell, but they should certainly be cognizant of his present on the Eagles. Perhaps buoyed by the Phillies finally winning a World Championship last year, and setting themselves up for another opportunity this year, the Eagles are clearly going for broke, and doing whatever it takes to put themselves back on the front page, even if it means selling their souls for a chance at a championship. And whether you agree or disagree with their methods, I have a funny feeling that if their gamble pays off, no one in Philadelphia will be complaining.
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