Are Falcons making the right football decision on Vick?

Vick leaving the field in his last NFL game at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. (CURTIS COMPTON/AJC)

Vick leaving the field in his last NFL game at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. (CURTIS COMPTON/AJC)

VICKSVILLE – Let’s go there today. But let’s keep up the good manners we’ve been working on this offseason.

Fussing is fine. Cussing is not.

Two of my favorite folks in the NFL – Gil Brandt and Jamie Dukes – shared their very different views on

Michael Vick’s possible return to the National Football League.

Former Falcon DeAngelo Hall was fined for supporting Michael Vick.

Former Falcon DeAngelo Hall was fined for supporting Michael Vick.

Let’s look at some of the issues:

SHAKING OFF THE RUST: Vick has not played since Dec. 31, 2006 against the Philadelphia Eagles, when he left the game with an ankle injury giving way to Matt Schaub.

He was working out in Bobby Petrino’s offense over the 2007 offseason when the federal dogfighting case broke.

“It will be a challenge, but I’m not nearly as concerned about that,” said Dukes, an analyst with the NFL Network and former player.

Brandt, the former Dallas personnel man, shared a story about a linebacker the Cowboys drafted out of Missouri, who went into the service for two years.

“When he came back he was just not the same,” Brandt said. “I think it’s like somebody that drops out of school for two years and then they try to recover their study habits, it’s very, very hard. . . .

NFL Network's Jamie Dukes.

NFL Network's Jamie Dukes.

“I just think it’s really hard for a guy that is away and misses two years to get back up to speed and realize that you have to work to be successful because you lose that edge.”

THE WILDCAT OFFENSE: Most have contended that Vick could come back as a Wildcat offense quarterback.

“The spread helps him get a job,” Brandt said. “If and when he’s cleared. He can do that pretty well because of the fact that he can run so well.”

Dukes thinks that with teams – like the Falcons – emphasizing the running game, that Vick is a fit for any run-heavy attack.

“Look at the Falcons and their success,” Dukes said. “Most teams think if we can play good defense and run the football, we are going to be successful. So what Michael brings to the game. . . is you’re going to have one of the top three rushing offenses in the league. That’s just fact. Every year he’s played that number speaks for itself.”

VICK LACK OF PASSING PROWESS: Vick has a lively arm, but he was still developing as a passer. Former

The infamous trick water bottle from Miami International Airport (D. ORLANDO LEDBETTER/AJC)

The infamous trick water bottle from Miami International Airport. (D. ORLANDO LEDBETTER/AJC)

coach Bobby Petrino would have helped him along if things had worked out.

“Some might say he’s not a career 60 percent passer; are we going to ignore the yardage that he gets running the football?,” Dukes said. “Are we going to ignore all of the other things that he does?

“He’s not the prototypical NFL quarterback, but that does not mean that he’s not a good quarterback. He still will be a good quarterback.”

Brandt never liked Vick as a passer.

“At Virginia Tech, he hit 56 point something of his passes,” Brandt said. “Which is not very good. His brother (Marcus) who wasn’t even considered a good passer and hit 59, almost 60 percent of his passes. In the Wildcat formation, that is probably where he has to be if he’s going to be on offense.”

CAN VICK STILL PACK THE STANDS: It’s no league secret that for years before Vick arrived, selling out Falcons game was a difficult task. TV blackouts have a place in local Falcon lore.

“Vick is recession proof,” Dukes said. “That is the one thing that I can say about him that people forget. If he’s going to play, he’s going to pack out whatever stadium he’s going in.

“How many members of PETA are actually season ticket holders? You where here with the Falcons fans when this thing went down. You saw that the season ticket holders wanted Michael Vick back.

“They understood that he did something terrible and they understood that he needed to pay some form of a price for what he did. But they wanted him. This wasn’t a racial issue, black, white or purple. Falcon fans, season ticket holders, wanted their quarterback.

“So whatever team he goes to, those fans are going to want their quarterback to play. Especially, if their quarterback position is poor. Are you telling me that Michael Vick won’t go into St. Louis, where they are worried about selling tickets and sell that place out? You are telling me that if he went to Kansas City that he wouldn’t pack that place out? I know they just got Matt Cassel, but before that. If he went to Detroit he would pack that joint.”

Cleveland and San Francisco are two other quarterback-needy teams Dukes mentioned. (Hey, Cleveland does have the Dawg Pound, too! I know, bad joke.)

Vick could smile back during OTAs in July of 07 before the dogfighting case broke. (CURTIS COMPTON/AJC)

Vick could smile back during OTAs in July of 07 before the dogfighting case broke. (CURTIS COMPTON/AJC)

POSITION CHANGE: Agent Joel Segal and Vick’s camp are not considering a position change to wide receiver, running back or defensive back.

Brandt thinks that might not be wise.

“I don’t know if you can teach a guy to back pedal, but he’s an athlete,” Brandt said. “He might be a corner because of his speed and athletic ability. Because of his running ability, he might be a running back. There will be opportunities for him, but I think it will be extremely hard for him to come back as a quarterback.”

Vick is a quarterback in Dukes’ book.

“He’s not Peyton Manning, but you know what, he’s got some things that Peyton Manning doesn’t have,” Dukes said. “Peyton has some things in the passing game that Mike doesn’t have. Nevertheless, he’s a very effective quarterback. . .

If Vick is re-instated, which team will he take his first snap from center?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...
“Michael Vick is a quarterback. He’s not some slot back. You can use him in the Wildcat, but Michael Vick is a quarterback.

“That guy can play quarterback. He’s not Steve Young in the West Coast offense, but guess what, who is? He is a good enough quarterback.

“His numbers are pretty darn good, when you compare it to some of the bums who have played the quarterback position. This guy wins games.”

THE HUMANE SOCIETY OF THE UNITED STATES: For us folks that have covered the Vick case from the beginning, we know about the substantial role The Humane Society of the United States played in helping to convict Vick.

PETA does all of the protesting, but the well-financed Humane Society does the heavy-lifting.

It’s ironic now that they now may play a role in helping Vick cleanse his reputation. Here’s a link to a blog written by their president Wayne Pacelle.

FROM THE E-MAIL BAG: Here are some of the e-mails I received this week on Vick’s release to home confinement.

“Orlando, I am surprised no one did a story about Vick’s day to day life in prison. There is some disconnect in this country to what prison is. I hear people saying he needs to be punished when he gets out. What do they think he was doing in prison?

“You mention he will be on home confinement and add the 3,500 square foot house. You think a killer cares if he is juiced in a mahogany electric chair or a metal one. They must have something in the journalism school that says to leave the description of prison or punishment alone.

“If you talk about it maybe someone might not be afraid of it, get it figured out, and maybe want to go there.

“The place is hell; the man has been through hell for a damn dog fight.”

* * * * *

“The no good SOB should never be allowed to play in the NFL again.”

* * * * *

“Now that he has paid his debt to the dogs, can we move on, and let him get on with his life. He should not have been in jail for fighting dogs, and I am a dog lover, but who died and made P.E.T.A. gods. I hope he is allowed to play football, or (whatever) he wants to do without (a) newspaper reporter recording his every move. . . .
“The media should get over it, and let him move on, the public has.”

* * * * *
“I believe the Falcons are making a BIG mistake in not keeping Vick. Yes, we have a terrific new starting quarterback who deserves to remain that way. However what if he gets hurt? You need a good backup and certainly could we believe that the other QB’s could come close to filling Ryan shoes?

“Michael Vick is serving his debt to society by virtue of his prison time, probationary period and substantial loss of income. He is paying the price for his very poor past judgments. He has had plenty of time to think about his stupidity while he was in Leavenworth. . . .

“Atlanta sports teams have traded away so many good athletes and have nothing to show for it. Vick can contribute and I believe that when Vick is reinstated, Mr. Blank should consider what Vick could do and give Vick, a talented star, another opportunity.”

* * * * *

Remember the rules, y’all. Fussing is fine. Cussing is not.

Let’s try to have a civil dialogue on this. Are the Falcons making the right football decision? Should they let Vick play in a preseason game or two in order to rebuild some value and then trade him? Will you get anything for him when teams know that you are going to cut him if you can’t trade him? Should they just wash their hands and move on?

440 comments Add your comment

Dirty Bird

May 22nd, 2009
11:13 am

Of course the birds are making the right decision. All Vick brings to the table is speed and trouble. The birds are trying to move forward not backwards.

uga_b

May 22nd, 2009
11:28 am

The Falcons can’t really trade him after making it clear they will release him. Technically, someone could to retain the rights and not bid, but I don’t see this happening. Someone brings him in midseason after an injury. I still think he could work well in the slot. Too fragile to be a fulltime RB–not sure he could get the blitz pickup. Probably could run the read option in the wildcat but that is 10 plays.

He has always been fun to watch–I just dont think he can get a playbook down in such short time which puts his 3 years out of the league without playing and makes him almost 30.

Old school fan

May 22nd, 2009
11:34 am

I am torn on the Vick situation. On one hand I feel that he is a potential PR nightmare for any team that takes a chance on him. I never liked him as a QB but I’ve had my jaw drop on occasion during diplays of his athletisism. But then I can also sympathize with him. I have a very low level felony on my record. Nowhere even approaching what Vick did yet I am finding it nearly impossible to find work in my profession because of it. I am also very good at what I do. Should companies be forced to hire me just because I “paid the price”?

Unca' Bob

May 22nd, 2009
11:34 am

This should be good!

Andy

May 22nd, 2009
11:36 am

Vick does not play for the Falcons anymore. Get over it and move on. He broke a federal law and was essentially fired. The same thing would happen to anyone else. He didn’t get a raw deal or cheated by anybody. This has nothing to do with race and it never will. He broke the law, period. It’s not like he was busted for just dogfighting, but he bankrolled the entire operation. He essentially created an illegal organization in order to make money.

Should he get the chance to play again, of course. Just not with the Falcons. They have a QB and it would be a PR nightmare. Plus, he lied repeatedly to his boss about his involvement in the dog fighting case. Why on earth should the Falcons bring him back.

I hope he has learned from all of this and can someday resume his career. It seemed to me that he took everything for granted before, so hopefully he has a new outlook on life.

Mort Merkel

May 22nd, 2009
11:39 am

How silly. Of course the Falcons should not take this clown back. Are you nuts? Jamie Dukes, “He wins.” Uh, not much over his past 24 games. He’s a poor passer. He was a crummy leader. He flipped off the fans and lied. Let him be some other team’s burden.

singndablues

May 22nd, 2009
11:42 am

He’s done his time so he deserves an opportunity to play again. As much as some would like to fantasize about his return in the Atl, it would never work. Think Terrell Owens 100 times over. He will be a major distraction no matter where he goes but if his team wins more games than the previous year fans will come on board and the distractions will fade away.

Intramural Team is Aggressive

May 22nd, 2009
11:48 am

This team has moved on. Period. I loved the guy as much as anyone else when he was the Falcons QB, but his time in Atlanta is over. One positive thing that happened during the Vick saga was that Blank learned he needed to reorganize and change the culture of the organization. With that realization and a bit of luck, look where we are now. I realize that this is SURE to incite irrational statements, but seriously, just let him and us move on.

Falcons Obit

May 22nd, 2009
11:49 am

The Atlanta Falcons passed away after a two year battle with Vick syndrome on Wednesday the 20th in Leavenworth, KS. A spokesperson said the embattled Falcons went peacefully and quickly as news spread that Michael Vick was released. Memorial services will be announced at a later date, but you won’t know it, because no one cares.

The Dogfighter Returns

May 22nd, 2009
11:54 am

the falcons are so scared of michael vick burning them they do not know what to do. cut the guy and move on.

The falcons are experiencing the same thing men feel when you have to let that freaky broad go? where do you go to find another freaky broad like her once you let her go?

Anita - FALCONS Season Ticket Holder

May 22nd, 2009
11:56 am

The FALCONS are absolutely making the right decision on getting rid of MV7, and I applaud them for it after years of enabling his behavior.

Who else should get rid of this monster?

- His gold-digging fiance

- Humanity

- Roger Goodell

- His loyal “friendz” who ratted him out the Feds

- His Homeowners’ Association

- His library card should be revoked as well

Any trade the FALCONS get for him would be like accepting “BLOOD MONEY,”

Just cut this cancer free.

Reno 911

May 22nd, 2009
11:57 am

Man, just when this blog had turned into a football-competent, Falcons-focused discussion forum. Here we go.

F.I.L.A.

May 22nd, 2009
11:57 am

Funny, we were told all of last year to MOVE on, New QB, Playoff Berth, Young team…. Yet All the AJC, sportstalk Radio, MIKE VICK… What a slap in the face of Matty Ice. Oh well, just goes to show that Mike Vick is still making the cash registers go cha Ching!!! Meanwhile Blank is Begging for Screamers……

WR

May 22nd, 2009
11:58 am

Unca’Bob, I’m with you, talk about derailing the bird cage, its only a matter of time before the fireworks get started. At least its Memorial Day weekend, if you ever wanted to take a break from the bird cage now would be the time. By the way don’t get me wrong, if their was going to be some serious debate or opinions and arguments, I’m all for it but I can’t honestly see that happening, hopefully it will but I doubt it, after all of our predictions I predict the bird cage will be closed for the weekend.

Whopper Dawg

May 22nd, 2009
12:00 pm

I think that there are some actions in this world that when taken, you forgo certain privileges. It is not a right in this country to hold a certain type of job, An attorney for example, can commit actions that cause then to the barred from practicing law. In my mind, Vick’s actions were severe enough to not permit reinstatement in the NFL, which is a privilege, not a right. And I know that there are others in the NFL that have committed actions that are as severe of even worse – guess what – get rid of them too.

That being said, he will be reinstated in the liberal age of no accountability for one’s actions.

As to Vick’s on the field abilities, he is probably the best broken play QB in history. Executing a play however, (play action, reading defenses, touch passes, accuracy, etc.) not so good, only average at best. And the defenses for the last two years had figured out how to defense him. That is why his wins tailed off – they defensed his running ability and he had no other reliable skills to counter. Combine that with the media circus that will surround him and his other baggage (lying, marijuana usage, flipping off fans) and the team that will take a flyer on him will be desperate in deed.

Thank goodness it won’t be Atlanta.

What!!!

May 22nd, 2009
12:00 pm

Mike Vick as a starter 41-39-1. ENOUGH SAID!

Mave2124

May 22nd, 2009
12:01 pm

As much as I am a fan of MV7, he can’t ever wear a Falcons uni again. That chapter is closed. You don’t mess with chemistry by adding baking soda to vinegar. The best I hope for is some AFC team picks him up on the cheap and he plays extremely well. Maybe he has to go to the UFL. BUT, I am a Falcons fan first and want our D to improve and get us to a Super Bowl win!

Poor McKay

May 22nd, 2009
12:01 pm

Move on.

I’d rather discuss the merits of trading for Greg Ellis (who is seemingly available). Imgine a third and long defensive line that features Abrahm, Jerry, Babineaux and Ellis (in 3 point stance) going after the QB? You could have 4 high schoolers playing DB with that tandem going after the QB.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

May 22nd, 2009
12:02 pm

We’re off to a good start. Some rational discussion.

RENO911: Will moderate it closely, but it’s a topic we have to deal with.

Falcon Devil

May 22nd, 2009
12:06 pm

Vick will play for the Vikings or Broncos!!!!

jason

May 22nd, 2009
12:07 pm

D3, Stirg, WR, Sarah B ,and everyone else in the CAGE, I know DOL has a new blog up. I will not be posting there. I will not sift through what I think is garbage to talk Falcon football with the crew in the CAGE. I will stay at this blog. I will be on off and on all day browsing.

BOB

May 22nd, 2009
12:07 pm

He’s paid his debt, get over it. I’m an animal lover and a Falcons fan. Get over it. He’ll probably have to take a while to get back into shape but you are delusional if you don’t think he’ll play for an NFL team again. It won’t be Atlanta, needs a fresh start. Could see Dallas maybe.

Falcon Devil

May 22nd, 2009
12:09 pm

I think Ellis would cost too much, prob a 1st rounder and we already gave up our 2nd rounder next year for TD.

Reno – I agree with DOL, while it would be nice to pretend the Vick debacle never happened it did, and we are finally approaching closure. Nothing wrong with dicussing it as long as it’s rational and not racially motivated.

F.I.L.A.

May 22nd, 2009
12:09 pm

”The Atlanta Falcons passed away after a two year battle with Vick syndrome on Wednesday the 20th in Leavenworth, KS. A spokesperson said the embattled Falcons went peacefully and quickly as news spread that Michael Vick was released. Memorial services will be announced at a later date, but you won’t know it, because no one cares.”

Falcon Devil

May 22nd, 2009
12:10 pm

2nd rounder for TG*

Brad

May 22nd, 2009
12:13 pm

On paper, the notion of Vick backing Matty seems solid, but in practice I don’t think it’s a good idea. Atlanta finally has a back-to-basics, no-nonsense approach and the team just doesn’t need the drama. Losing guys like Vick and MeAngelo and acquiring head coach Mike Smith went a long way towards creating a new attitude for the Falcons and I just don’t think they need to repeat the past. That said, like Blank, I wish Vick all the best and look forward to seeing him play in the NFL again, as long as he’s playing for a different team, preferably in the AFC.

Falcon Devil

May 22nd, 2009
12:17 pm

Speaking of UFL, why are they trying to go head to head vs the NFL? If the UFL was on now I would watch every single game. I need something to quench my football thirst. Seems like the most logical move, or else is will be like watching WNBA when NBA is on.

The Dogfighter Returns

May 22nd, 2009
12:21 pm

the ufl will be on during the weekdays. remeber there are a lot of players who do not make it in the nfl. guys like drew henson, charles rogers, mike williams, need i say more. these guys are good players who have made great money and still want to play.

Dirty Birdie

May 22nd, 2009
12:24 pm

57% winning percentage when Vick started his 67 games. 31% winning % in the he didn’t start from 2001 through 2007. That right there is the whole Value over Replacment Player argument that is made in baseball all the time. The theory in baseball is that a replacement level player is only worth a 30% winning percentage, and that a team of replacement level players would only win 30% of the games, and go 48-114 over the course of 162. An average baseball player should have a .500 winning percentage. Vick’s winning % averaged out to a 9.2-6.8 record over the course of 16 games. In the 29 games he didn’t start, the 31% winning % averaged out to a 5-11 record. Vick’s Falcons were 4.2 wins a season better when he was out there than when he wasn’t.

He shouldn’t be back as a Falcon. They’ve got Ryan now, and he’s plenty good enough. The circus would be too much for THIS FRANCHISE, even if the circus wouldn’t threaten to undermine a very good young QB in his second season, which the circus would do. For other franchises though, he is definitely worth the risk.

Dukes is right as well, that you have to take his running into account. Take a look at most NFL teams. They average about 65 to 70 or so plays a game. Many of them have around a 50/50 balance between the run and pass so that they run 33-35 times and the QB passes 33-35 times. Vick’s RBs ran about that much. Vick usually threw about 24 passes, threw about 8 check down passes to himself, and got sacked 2 or 3 times a game.

The passes to himself weren’t really much different than what other NFL QBs do in checking down to tight ends or RBs when there is nothing open. Drew Brees gets credit for inflating his accuracy rate by doing nothing more complicated than checking down to Reggie Bush, while Vick gets a hard time for deflating his accuracy rate by checking down to himself, when he’s as much of a threat as Bush with the ball in his hands outside the tackles? They’re really throwing the same number of passes, except that Vick isn’t checking down and completing safe passes to TEs and RBs, he’s checking down to himself without passing the ball.

Brandt is out of his mind as well. The last thing Vick needs is a gimmicky offense. That’s where folks get confused about how to use him, thinking they need to invent new silly offensive gimmicks for him. NO! Like Dukes indicated, with a QB like Vick, what you need is the most boring, simple-minded, vanilla Dan Reeves kind of offense where you pound the ball up the middle with a power running back (Hence why Reeves drafted TJ Duckett and was angry with Arthur Blank’s infatuation with Warrick Dunn). Since he’s not the greatest passer, you don’t want him throwing much. You pound the run, suck the defense up and in to the line of scrimmage. You also have strong TEs (Crumpler) and possession receivers (Finneran) up the middle that Vick can hit. This further sucks the defense up and in to the line of scrimmage. In turn, this opens up the field on the outside and deep down the field for a guy like Vick who is strong armed deep, but erratic short. It also decreases the ability of the defense to disguise coverages as much for a QB without the ability to figure out defenses as much as the elite QBs do. The defense has to commit to stopping the run and to covering the TE up the middle. Thus it becomes easier for him to spot the coverage and find open receiver. It also increases the ability of a receiver getting open deep, especially since if the defense is sucked up and in to the LOS, Vick can scramble outside better, buy more time, and find and hit the receiver deep. Last of all, with the defense sucked up and in to the LOS, it allows Vick the freedom to do all the havoc he can create once he is outside the tackle box.

That was the travesty of the West Coast regime of Mora. They ran the ball, but never pounded it. The only up the middle threat was Crumpler when Finneran was hurt. Everything was based on passing outside and running outside. A very ill fit for the QB they had. Still managed to go 26-22 during that regime despite an offensive scheme ill suited for the player personnel employing it

jimmy

May 22nd, 2009
12:27 pm

mr.blank should bring vick into camp get him in shape mentally and physically.then deal him to the highest bidder

D. Orlando Ledbetter

May 22nd, 2009
12:30 pm

WHAT: Vick’s record was 38-28-1 as a starter. He was 15-16 over his last 31 starts. There’s a notion that the league caught up to him after a great start, which included a trip to the NFC Championship game.

phar71

May 22nd, 2009
12:30 pm

No Doubt he has paid his due, and deserves a right to make a living somewhere, just not here.

It could divide the locker room, if matty ice struggles at all, it would be a huge distraction for a team that is finaly the topic because of having a good football team.

I wish him all the best in the future as long as he is not playing the Birds.

JJB

May 22nd, 2009
12:35 pm

The Falcons will not cut vick until Roger Goddell makes a ruling an reinstates him. If he is held out this year, then the falcons do not have to take the two year salary cap hit. The moment that he is reinstated is the moment that he gets cut. The Falcons cannot have that much salary sitting on the bench for Vick to be the 2nd string. I hope that he does well and straightens out his life.
Some team will take a chance, but he will be paid close to the league minimum for his years and have an incentive-laden contract with lots of hurdles.

Falcon Devil

May 22nd, 2009
12:36 pm

Blank has made it clear Vick is not welcome on our team after the pain he has put the franchise through. It’s not a question of whether we can use his talent. Beyond the QB controversy it would stir up along with racial tensions, it would be like taking back a spouse who cheated for 6 years and lied to your face about it and is now back after having left you and you lost all your money in the divorce. His salary and his presence have no place in the new Atlanta Falcons franchise.

Vick Supporter

May 22nd, 2009
12:37 pm

I would prefer that Vick get a new start with a new team. This franchise is just learning how to be a true NFL franchise. He needs to go somewhere established, a real nfl franchise

Vick Supporter

May 22nd, 2009
12:40 pm

If “Ice” struggles, which he will, it would divide the locker room and the city again, and we know how ugly that can get. I would love to see Vick go to a NFC South team. That would be great. I’m so glad that he will play football again…I won’t be forced to watch the Falcons.

Mike Jay

May 22nd, 2009
12:43 pm

I think Dukes has Falcon’s Fans confused with Vick Fans. Falcon fans were already starting to get feed up with Vick’s inconsistent playing on the field, non existant leadership, lack of improvement, off the field fiascos and the flicking off of fans. The Vick fans didn’t see any of this…

I personally do not know of a single Falcon’s Fan or season ticket holder who would want him back.

Great Falconi

May 22nd, 2009
12:46 pm

All the baggage aside, the main problem for Vick is that he absolutely cannot be counted on to win games with his arm. This automatically handicaps a team’s offense. As we all know, you can run the ball a lot in this league, but good defenses will shut the run down. As we also all know, Vick didn’t do very well when he faced defenses that could shut down the running game.

Jamie Dukes is right to say that Vick has some skills that Peyton Manning doesn’t have, but it takes a hell of a lot more effort for a defense to have to shut down the running game and the passing game. That’s what makes guys like Brady, Manning and McNabb so good. Those guys can fling it 40-50 times if they have to and still win the game without a running attack.

All of this talk about Vick playing as a “Wildcat” QB is a little strange. His running is more effective when he’s starting the whole game, right? He could go back to pass and improvise something. That was when Vick was at his most dangerous on the field. In order for the Wildcat to work with Vick, he’ll have to throw the ball so well out of it that defenses will have to sit back. The likelihood of that happening is minimal. Vick’s amazing running ability probably doesn’t have a long life span (a few years, tops…wear and tear will take care of the rest), so his next team, especially a team with very mediocre QB talent, would be hard-pressed not to name him a starter.

I’ll close by saying that it doesn’t really matter to me where Vick goes, when he comes back, etc. Nevertheless, I’m positive he will be back in the league at some point. When that point comes, a team will have to figure out how to minimize his deficiencies in the passing game.

"Chef" Tim Dix

May 22nd, 2009
12:47 pm

D., that’s not a notion, that’s a fact.

rfsbkr

May 22nd, 2009
12:49 pm

I hope that one day, we will learn to forgive. Ther are people out there ( probably in your family) who have done much worse. Have you forgiven Bush for getting our family members killed in a war that was not called for and for lying to all of us. Think about it people

Fal Con Fan

May 22nd, 2009
12:52 pm

Vick will never be a Falcon again because he lied to Arthur Blank and made him look like a fool, holding a press conference to show his support of #7 one week before the Feds indicted him. That said, he did his time that the law said he had to do and he should now be free to pursue a career. I predict he’ll be taking snaps for Oakland before Labor Day.

WRich

May 22nd, 2009
12:58 pm

I was one of the biggest Michael Vick supporters and could not believe that he would do what he was accused of. I felt betrayed when the evidence showed that he was guilty of the accusation. In reality, Michael Vick had not betrayed me but rather himself and the Falcon organization. I think if he had been truthful from the beginning then more fans would have been willing to forgive and forget

Michael Vick does deserve a second chance as long as he acknowledges what he did was wrong and certain safeguards are put in place to ensure he does not get back in with the wrong crowd again. That said, he can not come back to Atlanta as this is a team that has moved on with Matt Ryan and Michael can not be allowed to break the momentum which this team is showing.

WR

May 22nd, 2009
1:04 pm

D-Led, apparently you deleted my post even though it didn’t contain any harsh language, no insults, and stuck to the rules. I asked fellow members of the bird cage whom I have been commenting with for weeks to stay away from what I see will be a bitter hate filled debate and I’m deleted, you said you wanted a clean debate but how clean is a debate when someone steps in and deletes comments aimed at avoiding the hate. If saying we need to move on and allow this human-being to move on is such a problem that the comments are deleted what does it say about the media that guides our countries culture and values.

Larry A

May 22nd, 2009
1:04 pm

What Mike Vick did was wrong, he spent nearly 2 years in prison for it. Was that sufficient? I have no idea for I don’t wish to be his judge. But he paid the debt the government says he needed to pay.

When noone wants Vick due to the PR nightmare he brings, I hope Arthur Blank will see it as an opportunity to give him a chance as a backup QB so he can show that he has either grown up and is ready to be a complete football player or he has not and needs to find someplace else to reside. After a year as a backup and a good samaritan (if possible) he may have some trade value for a team looking for a veteran QB.

It is rare for a QB to play an entire season without injury, Matt Ryan got lucky last year. We should to count on that lucky again. He is going to get hit more this year. Teams will be more interested in knocking him out of games as he matures and becomes more of a threat. We will need a good backup to be competitive. I don’t like Vick but I think he could fill that role and probably at a pretty affordable rate from a salary cap perspective.

And he is highly incented to be the team player Mike Smith and Co demand. If he can’t pull it off, he is done – except for maybe the Raiders.

tale of woe

May 22nd, 2009
1:04 pm

The sooner the Falcons release him the better. I don’t think he should ever be allowed to play in the NFL again. He lied to everyone, cost the team, fans, and city millions. He failed a drug test right after he was found guilty. The dude might have had a couple of years to think things through, but what the heck was he doing before he was finally outted as a fraud? Vick should never be allowed to step foot in a NFL stadium. I can learn to forgive, but I don’t forget…I forgive him for killing dogs and being the money man behind a dog fighting ring. However, since I can not forget it, I dont think he should be allowed to play again.

Seven Fan ALWAYS

May 22nd, 2009
1:05 pm

I am a fan of the NFL and only became a fan of the Falcons because of Michael Vick. I would love to see him back in the NFL this season playing at his position ‘QUARTER BACK’! I respect Mr. Blank’s position BUT he did say that the only way Michael is leaving this organization is in a box… (remember that statement??). Well, the new team wagon better hope that Matt Ryan doesn’t have the sophomore jinx or get hurt… #7 MIKE VICK may just be under the center in the ATL again!

That’s when I will renew my season Tickets!!!

jimmy

May 22nd, 2009
1:07 pm

mr.ledbetter,it’s about the coverage the media will have on the comeback america loves an underdog,he will will have the pr people to wash his image,he will sell seats and maybe he can still play football.the same media that buried him will either resurect and promote or give his movie of the week

cutter

May 22nd, 2009
1:08 pm

I’m with you Reno 911 and Jason let Mike rest. First Schultz and Bradley now D.O.L. come on guys. This man has really touch your souls huh?

The Dogfighter Returns

May 22nd, 2009
1:09 pm

What I told you about NFL.com. Stop reinventing history. Try that crap on another blog. D ledbetter thanks for setting that turd straight.

Dirty Birdie great post dude.

Fumble

May 22nd, 2009
1:10 pm

Vick was and probably still can be a great athlete, exciting to watch. He was not a great QB. His tendency to scramble may have sold tickets but it made his receivers mediocre as they could never count on Vick or the ball being where the play called for them to be. Since his departure the improved stats of White and Jenkins have much to do with them being able to rely on the ball going their way if they run a good route. Additionally, Vick’s leadership was non-existent. While most starting QB’s study game photos and discuss the plays with the coaches while the other team has the ball, Vick typically sat sulking with his head hanging down, almost never bothering to figure out what went wrong.

He can be an offensive force for some team in some capacity but he will never be a successful leader or a successful QB.