When Michael Vick walks out of the United States Penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas from his incarceration for his involvement in a dog fighting ring, he will be in a load of debt and his name will be on the tips of many football general managers’ and owners’ tongues. The Associated Press reported that the Falcoms organization is seeking to trade the rights to Vick. In late February, word came that Vick would finish his sentence with home confinement where his travel would be restricted by a probation officer.
After his release and the terms of his probation are determined, the matter of punishment from the NFL must be settled. As things stand now, Vick is banned indefinitely. Now we all know that term is just a word and this could change, but Roger Goodell has not shown himself to take punishments lightly. In fact, he is much more of a taskmaster than his predecessor and his letter to Vick after the indictments was rather scathing. If the NFL holds to the ban and/or suspension, rule out the Canadian Football League as well. The CFL, since 2007, honors the suspensions of NFL players. Then, there are the rumors of the United Football League bringing Vick back to football (Read Terry McCormick’s recent article in The City Paper for more on this).
What should Vick do if/when he is reinstated to the NFL? Here are two thoughts:
Give up Playing Quarterback
Making a switch to either receiver (where he could presumably play in the slot positions) or running back makes the most sense for Vick at this stage of his career. Granted many experts say Vick would be great at the “Wildcat” position, but I see this as a trend that may last one more season at most as defensive coaches in the league do not take a lot of time to catch up to fads from the offense. The modern NFL offense is comprised of playmakers – guys who make things happen either through their precise play or by getting the ball in space. If Vick has any speed left in those legs, he would be well-served to seriously consider changing positions. For teams considering making a move for his services, Vick’s talent was, at one time, limitless it seemed. If he has retained any of that from his time in prison (where he reportedly played football of some sort), he is worth the chance just to see what he can do on the field.