Is Michael Vick Still a Relevant NFL Quarterback?

Cody Swartz@cbswartz5Senior Writer IFebruary 9, 2013

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 07:  Ryan Clark #25 of the Pittsburgh Steelers causes Michael Vick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles to fumble during the game on October 7, 2012 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Much has been said about the Philadelphia Eagles’ quarterback situation thus far this offseason. The Eagles’ drafting of Nick Foles and subsequent poor showing from Michael Vick seemed to signal the end of Vick’s tenure with Philly.

After all, Vick will be 33 years old by next season.

He’s struggled with injuries his entire career, playing all 16 games in a season just once. He’s missed significant time with rib injuries for two straight years, as well as dealing with a concussion in 2012.

But the hiring of Chip Kelly may lead the Eagles to bring back Vick for one more season. Kelly runs a high-powered offense predicated on explosiveness, quarterbacks that can run and no-huddle offenses.

For all his downfalls, Vick may still possess enough skills for Kelly to bring him back in 2013. The contract will have to be reworked; the Eagles absolutely know Vick isn’t worth the $16.9 million he’s set to make next season. He probably isn’t even worth $5 million, considering his inconsistencies as a passer and his inability to stay healthy.

Vick will be looking to start for a team that can build its offense around him.

That’s unlikely to happen in Philadelphia, simply because Kelly won’t be looking at Vick as his quarterback of the future. Kelly will want to start his coaching tenure with a young quarterback, a la Geno Smith or E.J. Manuel, either of whom could be obtained in this year’s NFL draft.

Several teams will be in the market for a quarterback this offseason and that could lead Vick to explore his options elsewhere. The New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, Oakland Raiders, Kansas City Chiefs and Arizona Cardinals could all be looking for a new quarterback in 2013.

Vick will likely want several years on his new contract. Coming back to Philly on a reduced deal makes little sense for both Vick and Kelly. Vick isn’t the future in Philadelphia. He’s had his chance, making the most out of it in 2010 and failing to do so in 2011 and 2012.

Couple that with the promise Foles showed as a rookie, and Vick isn’t a fit in this town anymore.

A case can be made that it’s difficult to believe Vick can even run an NFL offense without getting injured. He was so beaten and battered down the stretch last season because of the Eagles’ shoddy offensive line. Vick’s high turnover problems (10 interceptions and 11 fumbles in just 10 starts last season) were a serious concern. He had a propensity for turnovers inside the red zone, which directly led to a handful of Eagles’ losses.

Vick’s completion percentage and yards per attempt each rated just 25th in the league last year. His passer rating was 24th. That’s not a reason for any team to think they can win a handful of football games with Vick as their quarterback.

Kelly’s only option to bring back Vick could be as a mentor to a younger quarterback, but Vick will likely command too much money. Any team that signs Vick has to know they’re probably only getting a quarterback for 10-12 games per season due to Vick’s injuries.

That’s not going to make him too sought after if the Eagles release him. Simply put, Vick has an uphill battle if he wants to be a relevant starting quarterback again. He’s overcome adversity in the past, but given his age and declining skill set, this may be too much.