Michael Vick would probably consider 2011 to be a disappointment. The Philadelphia Eagles quarterback saw his team crawl out of the proverbial gate in September, he missed three games due to injury in November and December and his team spent January not participating in the playoffs, but watching them.
Vick needs to address a few concerns if 2012 is to be any rosier.
Vick needs to win early. That dismal start last September doomed Philadelphia's season almost as soon as it began. Philly lost four of its first five games and six of its first nine. And despite winning the last four games of their season (a stretch where Vick played rather well), the Eagles couldn't crawl out of the hole they had dug for themselves.
Vick needs to stay healthy. Since returning to action in 2009, Vick has yet to remain on the field for an entire season. This was understood when the Eagles signed him to big money last August: this guy plays a style of football with a predisposition to injury.
But now Vick, who turns 32 on June 26, is assuming more of a leadership role. And nobody can lead a team from the training room.
Vick needs to continue to stay out of trouble with the media. Despite his charitable work over the last three years, Vick will still be known to some as the NFL dog fighter (whether or not that permanence is fair will be a debate for another day). The dogs from the Bad Newz Kennels are still being followed by the media.
And Vick's pending appearance at the NFL's Rookie Symposium, along with Adam "Pacman" Jones and Terrell Owens, further cements his place in the league's "Don't Be Like Me" Club. The farther Vick can stay away from nightclubs, guns, and dogs, the better.
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