Posted at 7:13 AM on February 17, 2009
by David Zingler
All signs point to Michael Vick's reinstatement into the NFL this summer. The Falcons are currently shopping the disgraced QB, but with his contract and baggage, Vick is untradable (you can't blame them for trying). So, it's just a matter of time before Vick is released and on the open market.
Is the former Pro Bowl signal caller worth a look by the Vikings?
The knee-jerk answer is "Are you @#!$%&! crazy?", but I think it's worth considering. The Vikings QB situation is probably the worst in the league; they should explore all the options available to upgrade it. While nobody is going to hand a starting job to Vick, a creative coach could find ways to exploit his unique talents.
Imagine Adrian Peterson, Chester Taylor and Vick in the same backfield. The thought of that would make any defensive coordinator break out into a cold sweat. Of course, the thought of angry PETA protesters lined up in front of the Metrodome on opening day probably has the same effect on Zygi Wilf.
When Vick is released from prison in July, he will have spent over 18 months behind bars. That's about half the time the drunk driver who killed Malik Sealy served. He's paid his debt to society. But, he turns 29 in June and hasn't taken a snap since December 31, 2006, so have to wonder where he's at skills wise. And, of course, is he worth the inevitable PR hit?
I am in the minority, but I don't expect anything more from athletes than a good performance on game day. As long they get it done on the field, I am willing to put up with a lot. Vick will be under intense scrutiny wherever he ends up. With all of the time he's been locked up, you have to think he's done some soul-searching. He's also basically broke (or worse), so he's got plenty of reason to be motivated.
Why not give Vick an incentive filled contract with a low base salary? If he causes trouble or simply can't play, you just cut your losses and move on. If he behaves and can play, you suddenly have one of the NFL's most dynamic players and one of the best sports stories of the year.
(Photo courtesy of Getty Images)