Brace yourself Packers fans...
Michael Vick would look awfully good in the Green and Gold.
Ok look, no one likes what the guy did. He committed unspeakable, not to mention highly illegal, acts and was convicted of those crimes. He has never had a squeaky clean image...I seem to recall something about herpes and an alias "Ron Mexico."
Furthermore, Green Bay has never had a reputation like Dallas or Oakland for taking on people with troubled pasts. The Packers have always been an organization that valued personal integrity.
But let's not be too high and mighty. The greatest Packer ever was an alcoholic and abused prescription drugs.
Paul Hornung and Max McGee were hung-over playing in the Super Bowl because they were out partying the night before, and that was in the mid 60's!
This is not an excuse for allowing a highly questionable character onto your football because there is precedent. That would be foolish. I just don't want to hear, "That kind of person would never be in Green Bay."
But look at it from a football perspective.
He's never shown any reason to believe he will be anything but a below-average passer, and he can't stay healthy because he runs too much. But the Falcons won because running was what Vick did best. Hence reason No. 1:
Vick could bring a dynamic element to the running game
Remember, this is the greatest running quarterback in NFL history. The guy is one of the greatest pure rushers in the history of the game, regardless of position. Go turn on the highlights of him running all over Minnesota and tell me I'm wrong.
Or better yet, think back to when Brett Favre was invincible at Lambeau in the cold and a young Mike Vick torched the Packers with snow falling in the playoffs.
The guy is electric with the ball in his hand, and while Ryan Grant can be a home-run hitter, he's not going to scare defenses like Vick would. Plus, if there is a skill a person is just born with, it is that instinct to run.
Prison certainly didn't hurt Vick's natural instincts towards being elusive...if anything, it heightened them.
True, Green Bay has a quarterback. A pretty good one actually. That brings up No. 2:
Vick won't have to be "the guy"
Aaron Rodgers put up gaudy stats last year and the offense was tough to stop. But wouldn't he be even better if defenses had to worry about Mike Vick running 5-10 plays a game?
Vick was as dynamic as anyone in the NFL when he was healthy. He couldn't stay healthy because he ran all the time. Well, if he's only in the game for a fraction of the plays, you could save him over the course of the season.
It even takes pressure off A-Rod. For a series or two each game, he'll have an extra opportunity to watch the defense from the sidelines, talk with coaches, and game plan.
It doesn't hurt that the guy taking his place is capable of taking it to the house every time he touches the ball.
And he can do it from any position.
Vick could play all over the field
Put Vick on the field in the Wildcat and let him run a spread option. Line him up under center and run a wishbone option. McCarthy likes that full house backfield anyway.
Put Vick in the slot and have him run routes. Anyone who says he'd rather have Jordy Nelson lined up wide over Vick is a liar.
Pittsburgh won a championship running a gadget play or two a game. The Dolphins shocked the world and made a playoff run coming off a one win season in large part because of the success of their Wildcat offense.
Once the league figured out Ronnie Brown couldn't throw, it stopped working as well, but Vick CAN throw...at least better than Ronnie Brown.
If you line Vick up in the shotgun with a setback, the defense has no way of knowing if he's going to run or pass.
Once you have the defenses guessing, he works just as well as a decoy. Much like when teams loaded up Randy Moss and the Pats unloaded underneath to Wes Welker, you don't think having Vick in the slot opens up the coverages for Greg Jennings and Donald Driver? Guys who don't need much help to get open as is.
Vick won't be a distraction
This is as important an aspect as the other four. Vick has to go to a team that can handle him being there. The actual distance may only be about 1,000 miles, but Green Bay is forever away from Virginia and Atlanta, where Vick's infamy precedes him.
I don't want to be crass, but how much trouble can Vick really find in Green Bay? All that blaze orange in December tell you that its not an animal-loving community (except maybe on the wall).
But it is a close community and Vick won't be able to just sneak off and fool around...not in a city that loves football the way they do in Packerland.
And that community will save him. The Packer fans are outstanding and if Vick performs, the move with be lauded. Like any move, if Vick doesn't, the Packers made a mistake. But that goes for any player.
The point is, Cheeseheads will forgive his transgressions if he scores touchdowns. As a fan you may be disagreeing now, but talk to me if he winds up running all over the Pack in the Metrodome.
That leads me to No. 5:
He won't be playing anywhere else if he's playing in Green Bay
It would be a nice incentive to have him in Green Bay and not Minnesota, or anywhere for that matter. Certainly that is not reason enough to sign him, but it has to be a nice added benefit.
Vick and AP in the same backfield would be awfully tough to deal with. Vick is just a good enough passer to make that play-action game there deadly.
This may seem like a joke, but it most certainly is not. The title is somewhat, but the point is putting together the most talented team possible.
If there is an opportunity to add talent to your team you have to take it. He would fit into the personnel on this team and wouldn't take away from what the Packers already do well.
You may not like what has happened in the past, but he's no Pacman Jones, or even Michael Irvin. He's ultra-talented and those natural gifts can still be harnessed.
His passing was never great, but it won't have to be on this team. Vick can help the Packers in 2009 and beyond, and his presence won't hurt the team or the organization.
Vick understands what kind of opportunity he has in front of him if he's smart. That means flying right. If he can give that kind of electricity to a football team for what I assume will be cheap, it is worth the risk.