Rest of the nation weighs in on Vick

Frank Garren of West Milford, N.J., and his dog Diva took a break outside the Philadelphia Eagles' practice facility in Philadelphia on Saturday. Garren, a fan of pit bulls, has not made a decision yet about the Michael Vick signing.
Frank Garren of West Milford, N.J., and his dog Diva took a break outside the Philadelphia Eagles' practice facility in Philadelphia on Saturday. Garren, a fan of pit bulls, has not made a decision yet about the Michael Vick signing.
Posted: August 17, 2009

Here is a sampling of opinion about the Eagles' signing of Michael Vick from around the nation.

Vick's challenges are hardly behind him. A few years ago, he made a crude gesture to fans who booed him after a bad performance.

What he's about to hear - and see - will make those boos sound like Sunday school songs.

The outrage has already started. Protesters were outside the Eagles' training complex Friday. There will surely be more, and some Eagles fans will spurn the team over this.

Vick will hear jeers, insults, and vile comments. He will have to take it. "Turn the other cheek" will become his new golden rule.

- William C. Rhoden, New York Times

Is it possible that the best-case scenario for the Eagles with their signing of Michael Vick is also the worst-case scenario?

If things work out and Vick is a productive member of the team, making big plays out of some semblance of a "Wildcat" package, Eagles fans will call for him to get more and more playing time. That, of course, would mean less time for Donovan McNabb, which would only serve to alienate the true franchise quarterback in Philadelphia.

Remember when Patriots owner Robert Kraft said that New England wasn't interested in Vick because they had, in his opinion, the best player in the world in Tom Brady and why would he ever want to take Brady off the field? Made sense to me. Probably made sense to McNabb as well, which is why no matter what he says publicly, I think this transaction creates an awkward situation for McNabb, and that's the last thing the team should be doing at this juncture with a championship-caliber roster.

- Ross Tucker, CNN-SI (sportsillustrated.cnn.com)

I might be the only NFL fan that doesn't really have strong feelings about Michael Vick's being signed by the Eagles. Don't condone what he did, but I do like stories of redemption and hope his turns into one of those. Have little idea how that will work out.

The NFL now has Vick's jersey for sale over at the NFL Shop, and I wonder about the people who choose to wear those. Offered for $79.99, the Web site says, "Walking around wearing this Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick replica jersey by Reebok lets everyone know you're a hard-core fan." Really? I don't know. Most hard-core fans I know wouldn't wear that jersey, at least until Vick does something for the Eagles, but apparently local demand for the Vick jersey is high. So what do you think that an Eagles Vick jersey says about the wearer?

- Stephanie Stradley, NFL Fanhouse (www.fanhouse.com)

The news of the day in the NFL, indeed, for the whole off-season, is that former Atlanta QB Michael Vick, who spent the last two years in jail, has signed with Philadelphia. On paper, Philadelphia looks like a soft landing spot for Vick, who will have some time to get his head back around the game while backing up incumbent Eagles starter Donovan McNabb. It does appear, though, to be something of a curious move for the Eagles. True, the Eagles get a veteran presence behind McNabb, who has had his share of injuries; however, the Eagles enter the season as one of the clear favorites in the NFC, and it is hard to see how Vick isn't going to be a huge distraction.

There is also a certain sense of irony that McNabb and Vick will be together in Philadelphia. Coming out of high school, Vick was a superstar option QB who just about everybody assumed would go to Syracuse to replace McNabb at the helm of the Orange offense. Vick, though, surprised the college-football fraternity when he signed with Virginia Tech instead, ostensibly because he wanted to forge his own identity. Should be interesting. No-fun league indeed!

- Great Blue North Draft Report (www.gbnreport.com).

Randy Moss would've looked good in a Cowboys' uniform, but Jerry Jones didn't draft the controversial receiver years ago because the team had experienced a plethora of embarrassing off-the-field issues.

Michael Vick would've looked good in a Cowboys' uniform, but Jerry never seriously contemplated signing the controversial quarterback after an off-season of ridding the locker room of T.O., Pacman, and Tank Johnson.

There's simply no way Jerry could justify getting rid of those guys and then signing the notorious Vick.

Now the Cowboys must deal with the fallout from Vick's joining the Eagles, because his presence makes it more difficult for the Cowboys to win the NFC East.

We all know Jerry would've loved adding Vick had the circumstances been different.

- Jean-Jacques Taylor, Dallas Morning News

Cynically speaking, and disregarding all of Friday's "second-chance" platitudes, Vick is an Eagle today because coach Andy Reid already has a vat full of "Wildcat" and other offensive plans for Vick dancing in his head.

Reid, also the Eagles' personnel chief, runs a star-crossed team that regularly contends for but never wins the Super Bowl. He thinks Vick, despite two years away, can maybe do something about that.

Others considered it, the Eagles just volunteered first to take the public-relations beating, and so fair is fair. It just is. Vick is an Eagle. Members of my own Philadelphia-area family are disgusted by this. I hope they'll still send me birthday cards.

Emotionally, seeing Vick back in the NFL with a two-year deal potentially worth about $7 million is revolting. [Jeffrey] Lurie admitted as much. Vick said he understood. "That's life," he said, "and I've got to deal with it."

Intellectually, though, it's inarguable; Vick served his prescribed sentence and sought employment in the business that best suits his skills, talents, and education.

- Tom Robinson, Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk, Va.)

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