Vick's role with Eagles is unclear
Now that the Eagles have Michael Vick, the question is, what will they do with him? The Eagles pulled off a blockbuster acquisition last night - one significantly more controversial than their bringing Terrell Owens to Philadelphia - when they agreed to a one-year contract with the former Atlanta Falcons quarterback and former convict. The team has an option for a second season.
Now that the Eagles have Michael Vick, the question is, what will they do with him?
The Eagles pulled off a blockbuster acquisition last night - one significantly more controversial than their bringing Terrell Owens to Philadelphia - when they agreed to a one-year contract with the former Atlanta Falcons quarterback and former convict. The team has an option for a second season.
But the move to bring in the multifaceted Vick who was viewed as a disappointment in certain circles - aside from his off-the-field problems - isn't by any means an obvious one.
The Eagles have a Pro Bowl quarterback in Donovan McNabb. They have what they say is his eventual successor in Kevin Kolb. Unless Kolb's recent injury - a torn medial collateral ligament in his left knee - is more serious than the team has let on, there's no reason to believe the Eagles brought Vick in to be a backup.
Coach Andy Reid said that McNabb was fully aware of the Eagles' plans to acquire Vick. McNabb said that he "lobbied for it."
"There won't be a quarterback controversy," Reid said.
More likely, however, is Vick being implemented into the Eagles' offense in the "Wildcat." A formation that splits the quarterback wide and puts a wide receiver and running back in the shotgun to receive a direct snap, the Wildcat has become a sensation in the NFL over the last few seasons. Eagles wideout DeSean Jackson has been used in a similar fashion.
"The people that look at the 'Wildcat,' it's a cop out," McNabb said. "He's a quarterback. He's not utility guy. He's not a receiver. He's not a running back."
Former Eagle Ike Reese is also a former teammate of Vick.
"I don't think you put yourself through the public backlash that they are going to receive tomorrow and the next few days from the people who are opposed to this type of move just for the 'Wildcat,' " said Reese. "The 'Wildcat' is not that prevalent in the NFL to bring him in for that. He hasn't played for two years. Why take the risk?"
In August 2007, Vick was convicted of conspiracy and running a dogfighting operation. He was sentenced to serve 23 months in a federal prison and was indefinitely suspended from the NFL. After he served 18 months, he was released to home supervision.Then he met with Roger Goodell and the NFL commissioner conditionally lifted the suspension July 27.
"I'm believer - as long as someone goes through the process - that there are second chances," Reid said. "It's very important that people get opportunities to prove that they can change. So we're doing that with Michael."
Vick, 29, can practice and play in the last two preseason games, including a home game on Aug. 27 against Jacksonville. He could be reinstated for the regular season by the sixth week. The language is ambiguous, however, and Vick could return earlier.
Vick, once the NFL's highest-paid player, hasn't played football since the 2006 season finale against the Eagles on New Year's Day 2007.
"It's going to take time – film work, conditioning, getting his strength back and his timing in the pocket," McNabb said.