As the Chiefs arrived in River Falls for their last training camp at that location one thing was clearly missing from their offensive roster, speed and athleticism. Besides running back Jamaal Charles and rookie wide receiver Quinten Lawrence the Chiefs have no speedy game breakers on their offense.
Which brings me to my main question why is a former first overall pick of the 2001 NFL Draft, three time pro bowler with 4.3 speed and the ability to throw the football out of the stadium still sitting on the free agent market?
As we all know I am talking about Michael Vick who has been recently reinstated after serving a two year sentence for financing a dog fighting ring. The fact that NFL teams are not taking so much as a sniff at Michael Vick is not collusion it comes down to the same thing all decisions in the NFL come down to money.
Not to say Michael Vick would cost a lot of money, in fact he would come at a relatively bargain basement price considering his talent. A NFL team could sign Michael Vick for somewhere in the neighborhood of a million dollars.
The reason teams have been scared away is the threat of losing their big money, sponsorship. If a team signed Vick they know there is a chance one of their sponsors would pull out just to get the good publicity of saying we wont run our ads during a game in which Michael Vick is playing. If a sponsor did that they would get more publicity than they would have got by running their ads during a NFL game.
Political powers like PETA would praise whoever pulled their commercials and it would be the number one story to be debated on sports talk radio and ESPN shows like PTI and around the horn.
If the NFL was not ran by cooperate sponsorship Michael Vick would have been on a roster the day he was reinstated to the league. I am not saying Michael Vick did not deserve what he got (maybe I would have gave him three years) but the point I am making is since he pleaded guilty Vick has done everything right, he served his sentence, he is going to be involved in community works speaking to people about the dangers and harsh realities of dog fighting.
Teams are not taking a moral stance on this issue there is just 31 owners in the league who don’t want any bad PR. Which is not a take on the owners of the league it is something that speaks volumes on the fans of the league. Owners are scared of the backlash from their fans, a owners worst nightmare is to pull up to their home Monday Night Football game two hours before kickoff only to see more people protesting holding up signs against the signing of Michael Vick instead of tail gaiting….. That would be a owners worst nightmare.
The reason I say that speaks volume to the fans is because fans control the game more than they realize. If a owner thought signing Michael Vick would produce eight home sellouts he would already be on a team. Which means it is time for NFL fans to forgive and forget, the truth is 2500 people are arrested each year for dog fighting and no NFL fan besides law enforcement members or PETA partakers could name one of the 5000 people arrested for dog fighting after Vick.
Nobody protests St. Louis Rams games even though Leonard Little plays for their team. Little as you may recall was convicted of drunk driving man slaughter in 1998. He did 90 days in jail received a eight game suspension and has since went on to make over 36 million dollars in the league and picked up a second DUI and if the Rams decided to release Little it would not take over a week for him to find a new home.
The bottom line is there is not a third string quarterback in the league that Vick could not beat out just with his raw abilities. Sure Vick was not that accurate as a quarterback to begin with and may be a little rusty after two years away from the game, but with the invention of the Wildcat offense Vick could step in immediately and play in certain situations.
It just does not take that much practice to catch the shotgun snap from center act like your going to pass it then run right as fast as you can. Vick would be a upgrade over Brodie Croyle ( Croyle played in two games last year and did not finish either of them) and the Chiefs have the leadership in place to have a reclamation project like Vick.
When Pioli and Haley took over Larry Johnson demanded a trade now he is singing a different tune saying things like “ I was perceived a s a team cancer now I want to be a leader” “I want to be a Chief”. The Chiefs could handle Vick and with Todd Haley being a former offensive coordinator he would have the creativity to take advantage of Vick’s skill set.
Vick could also factor in as a kick returner or receiver possibly, If the Scott Pioli is serious about putting together the best 53 players he can then Vick deserves a spot on this team, he could pay immediate dividends.