Could Interest in Michael Vick Begin To Heat Up Soon?
As OTAs begin drawing to a close, we enter the most dead period of the NFL off season. Every team in the league feels good about the roster they've put together up to this point.
Everyone also feels like every guy they've drafted has Hall of Fame potential, every free agent they've signed will pan out just fine, and any holes can simply be fixed by a little team bonding during Training Camp and the preseason.
However, at some point about a week into training camp, teams start to realize they don't have a team full of All-Stars and begin looking to pull in some other teams' excess talent.
For the Eagles, their excess of talent comes in the form of backup quarterback and on-again off-again pariah Michael Vick.
Around the draft in mid-to-late April, just about everyone around the league expected something to happen with Vick. The weeks surrounding the draft are when most trades get done, and there's always a high demand for quarterbacks—especially one like Vick, who has won a lot of games as a starter.
But nothing happened.
Whether it was simply a lack of interest based on his skills and how they fit with any team interested in acquiring a quarterback, or whether it was a matter of avoiding what some felt to be a public relations nightmare, nothing ever materialized for the embattled quarterback.
In fact, there didn't even seem to be too many solid rumors.
Teams like St. Louis and Buffalo were kicked around, but either their offers were far too low for what the Eagles wanted, or they never made an offer—likely the latter.
But with training camp getting underway in about a month for most teams, interest in Vick could start to heat up.
Guys with inside knowledge around the league like Adam Schefter and Jason La Canfora said back in April that Vick could become a hot commodity around this time of year, so it's possible they've got some sources with a look into front offices around the country who might have been kicking Vick's name around since the end of last season.
And still, a team like Buffalo remains the most likely landing spot.
New head coach Chan Gailey's system probably comes fairly close to meeting Vick's abilities. He'll have a very good running game to support him, and they could use a quarterback who can run away from pressure.
Their offensive line is once again going to need a lot of work, so immobile guys like Trent Edwards and Brian Brohm are going to have a difficult time getting anything done.
It's also very possible that this three-way competition for the starting spot, which the Bills will have going on through training camp, doesn't impress Gailey. If he's looking at his only three options, and isn't a fan of any of them, it would make sense that he looks at a guy like Vick to solve the issue.
Some sleeper teams to watch could be the Kansas City Chiefs and the Cleveland Browns.
The Chiefs don't seem thrilled with the way Matt Cassel is progressing, and due to the way his contract is set up, the Chiefs can part ways with him after this season and not do themselves a whole lot of harm in terms of cap penalties (assuming there is one) and dead money.
The Browns become an intriguing possibility due to the relationship between Andy Reid and the duo of Mike Holmgren and Tom Heckert, who are now in Cleveland's front office.
Holmgren and Heckert have already made several moves at the quarterback position—signing Jake Delhomme, trading for Seneca Wallace, and drafting Colt McCoy—but the word around the team is that they're not thrilled with any of them.
Delhomme has never been more than an average quarterback, Wallace is an unknown as a starter, and McCoy will more than likely hold a clipboard this season while the Browns struggle to figure things out.
Vick in Cleveland certainly is a long-shot, but it's something that can't be ruled out.
Then there is the possibility of an unknown team that suffers an injury and looks at Vick as an option for at least the 2010 season. Teams low on depth would include the New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, San Francisco 49ers, Houston Texans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the Chicago Bears.
If something were to happen to the starters on any of those teams, Vick would likely be an option they could consider.
The Eagles have made it clear they're willing to keep Vick, but it's clear they wouldn't mind moving him, either. They're putting out reports of him looking great in OTAs and regaining his speed and talking him up to the media, so it's possible they're just trying to drive up the price.
I'm not guaranteeing Reid pulls the trigger and moves Vick, but his name will be the subject of some intense rumors—at the very least—once a starter inevitably goes down in training camp or the preseason.
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