For Philadelphia Eagles, Releasing Michael Vick No Longer Makes Sense
All the rumors swirling that the Eagles are still considering cutting Michael Vick can stop as of right now, because it's not going to happen.
I don't have a personal relationship with Andy Reid or Howie Roseman, but just by watching Reid over the years and looking at things from a practical matter, cutting Vick doesn't even make sense anymore this late into the offseason.
If there were a time to cut Vick, it would have been before he received a $1.5 million roster bonus.
But now the only way Vick isn't an Eagle in 2010 is if a team steps forward with an offer the Eagles simply can't turn down and trade the gadget quarterback. If nothing materializes, Vick will be the guy behind Kevin Kolb next season.
Jeff Garcia has had his name tossed around a lot during the offseason as a possible replacement for Vick as the backup quarterback, but even that doesn't make sense anymore.
All anyone sees is the $5.2 million that Vick is scheduled to make this season. And while that's an unbelievably high price for a backup, $1.5 million of that has already been paid. There's no way the Eagles can ever get that money back, so as a practical matter, Vick is really going to be making $3.7 million for his on-field services this season.
While that's still a bit high, it makes a lot more sense when we see that a guy like Marc Bulger recently signed on with the Ravens at $3.8 million, and he won't see the field nearly as much as Vick will.
Bulger will be holding a clipboard unless something happens to Joe Flacco. Vick, on the other hand, could see as many as 10-12 plays per game in a Wildcat-style package and other gadget plays, making him more valuable than your run-of-the-mill backup quarterback.
But still, guys like Brian Baldinger don't see it that way.
"It's hard for me to believe the Eagles are happy about paying Vick $5.2 million to be Kolb's backup," Baldinger said to Geoff Mosher of the Courier-Post. "They're paying him like a starter," he said, adding that cutting Vick and signing Garcia would save millions and the Eagles would probably have a better player.
But, like I said, the Eagles aren't going to "save millions" by signing Garcia. If the Eagles were to cut Vick and sign Garcia, we can essentially add $1.5 million to anything Garcia is making, because that's what the Eagles have already invested in their backup spot.
The only difference is that rather than Garcia getting that money, it's already gone to Vick.
So if Garcia would even agree to, let's say, a one-year, $2.5 million deal, the Birds are only saving a little over $1 million for a guy who won't see half the plays Vick will see.
The extra money might be worth it to them to keep a guy in Vick who could a) have some trade value depending how he looks in training camp and the preseason, and b) add a dimension to their offense that no other backup would be able to.
It's still possible the Eagles will be trying very hard to move Vick, but if they can't, I don't see any scenario—other than something epic arising from the shooting incident from which he's been legally absolved (twice) of any wrong-doing—in which Vick is released.
If Vick were traded, however, expect Garcia to sign on about five minutes afterward.
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