May 20, 2009
Back in February, we looked at the most likely destinations for Michael Vick in the upcoming NFL season. With the NFL landscape looking a little different upon Vick's release from federal prison today, we've made a number of changes:
1) San Francisco -- The 49ers have the worst quarterbacking situation in the league and play in the division that is most up-for-grabs. Cast disciplinarian Mike Singletary as the gruff, but kind-hearted, coach willing to give a guy a second chance and this pairing could work. Ownership has been coy about the possibility of getting Vick, but so has that of every other team.
2) Jacksonville -- Hear me out on this one. (It's a longshot, but I have my reasons.) While I've yet to see the Jags mentioned once in connection with acquiring Vick, it's key to remember that oftentimes high-profile, questionably-charactered players go to the team nobody expects. Did anybody think that Buffalo was in the T.O. sweepstakes?
The Jags have Cleo Lemon(notes) backing up David Garrard(notes) (who, himself, was a disappointment in 2008). Bringing in Vick could spice up a stagnant offense and give the team some new formations to run Maurice Jones-Drew(notes) out of.
3) St. Louis -- Last year, the Miami Dolphins took advantage of the Wildcat formation to go from 1-15 to 11-5. St. Louis could do the same thing with Vick this year. Plus, the Turf at the Edward Jones Dome could help take advantage of what's left of Michael Vick's(notes) speed.
4) His house in Hampton, VA -- Roger Goodell said he won't reinstate Vick unless the quarterback shows "remorse" for his actions. According to the commish:
Michael is going to have to demonstrate to myself and the public and to a lot of people, did he learn anything from his experience? Does he regret what happened? Does he feel he's going to be a positive influence going forward? Those are the questions I would like to [ask] when I sit with him
As Jason Cole asked, what defines remorse? Does Goodell expect Vick to show up in his office with his head down and lip trembling? To pledge his earnings to dog shelters? To sit through three viewings of 'Marley and Me' while play-wrestling with Lassie's great-granddogs?
Because the terms surrounding Vick's reinstatement are so arbitrary, there's a chance that Goodell might refuse to reinstate the quarterback or reinstate him with a lengthy suspension. As a result, there's a distinct possibility that we might not see Vick on the field until 2010.
5) Seattle -- Another place mentioned as a top destination because of Jim Mora Jr.'s familiarity with Vick and because the team's quarterback situation is unstable. However, wouldn't Jim Mora Jr.'s familiarity with Vick be a negative factor? Mora Jr. was fired from Atlanta basically because of Vick. Why would he want to start a new job with old baggage?
Not listed: New England (John Clayton thinks this is a possibility, but adding Randy Moss(notes) was a risk with great reward. I'm not seeing what the huge benefit would be in signing Vick); Cincinnati (just because Vick's an ex-con doesn't mean Cincinnati automatically wants him); Washington (just because Vick is a big name doesn't mean Washington automatically wants him.)
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