Sunday, August 16, 2009
What the *%#!*%$
This past Thursday, I sat down expecting to watch a meaningless Eagles preseason game ... you know, a quarter or so of the first team, and then an audition for the others trying to make an impression. I had no idea whatsoever about the news about to shock the Philadelphia sports world.
As I was watching the game, in the second quarter, I received a text from my good friend Johnnay, saying the Eagles signed Michael Vick. My response to him was, "Yeah, whatever." He responded back to check the internet, which I did. My jaw almost broke the foundation of my basement. Really? Michael Vick an Eagle!??!?!?!? My first thought was, "I should probably get a trashcan, just in case my insides decide shoot out of my mouth/nose." I immediately followed that thought with a quick decision on which NFL team would replace the Eagles as my favorite.
I slept on it, and my opinion of the move changed somewhat. Look, from a moral perspective, there is no way I could ever defend Vick's previous actions. I'm not even going to try. What he did was reprehensible, inexcusable, and just plain disgusting. However, he did do his time, right? People who do their time deserve a second chance, right? If Vick indeed is remorseful (jury still definitely out), and he takes steps to educate others on the wrongs of dog-fighting, then he does deserve a second chance (my opinion only).
Another wrinkle to this - Vick grew up in a poor area of the South. Dog-fighting was prominent and accepted in this area. I am by no means justifying what he did. He still should've known better being in the position of power and influence he was in. He was stupid in thinking he could be involved in something like this and this not coming back to "bite him in the ass." The scumbags he hung out with eventually sold him down the river.
So, I believe in Vick getting a second chance. I'm skeptical, and I think everyone should be. This was not an easy decision to make. Vick was a tremendous athlete commanding millions of dollars just a few years ago (sure, he wasn't a very good quarterback). If he can bring some of that magic to the Eagles, and if he does good on his word to have a positive impact to society, this will be a great move for all. If he continues to be the Michael Vick of old, well, this will be a major hit to the Eagles franchise - one that will take years to prepare (The Eagles have not exactly been very fan friendly in recent years ... because of their success, they didn't need to be).
Obviously, we're going to see protests from those extreme groups like PETA. Here's the thing - PETA never forgives and forgets, and they use "terroristic" means to make their point ... much like extreme groups like Al Qaeda and the Taliban. This should be interesting in a city like Philadelphia. Not sure why Vick chose Philly as opposed to a smaller market team with a less ravenous fan base ... however, because IT IS Philly, the story should be that much more interesting/compelling.
By the way, I'm still not sure how I feel about Michael Vick wearing Jaworski's #7.