The man who received an 18-month federal prison sentence for abusing dogs is now being rewarded with a promotion for abusing cats.
After a phenomenal performance against the Detroit Lions in Week 2 of the 2010 NFL season, a rehabilitated Michael Vick has been awarded the job of starting quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles by head coach Andy Reid.
The decision likely comes as little surprise to football fans and stat buffs who’ve been wearing their social blinders and just looking at Vick’s production so far this NFL season; Vick has already wrung up 459 yards in the air, completing 37 of 58 passes along with three touchdowns and no interceptions.
He’s also contributed 140 yards to the Philadelphia Eagles running game with some extremely slippery scrambling and legwork that rivals some of the league’s top halfbacks—this in just six quarters of playing time.
Conversely, young franchise-hopeful Kevin Kolb connected just five of his 10 passes for only 24 yards while getting sacked three times in his opening two quarters of play against the Green Bay Packers before he sustained a concussion that would take him out of the game.
“When someone is playing at the level Michael Vick is playing, you have to give him an opportunity," Reid said in a Tuesday evening news conference. "This isn't about Kevin Kolb's play. You're talking about Michael Vick as one the best quarterbacks in the NFL right now. He's sitting there as possibly the hottest quarterback in the National Football League and he deserves a chance to play."
The decision to start Vick over Kolb may come as some surprise to Philadelphia Eagles fans however—Reid has been openly public about giving Kolb a second opportunity, even after the young hopeful sustained his concussion Week 1.
Similarly, Vick has been publicly humble, all but ignoring the Philadelphia quarterback controversy altogether, stating several times that he was perfectly comfortable playing the backup role to Kolb for the remainder of the season.
But perhaps Michael Vick impressed the Eagles front office enough by coming up with the Week 2 win against the Lions despite their 444 yards of offense and four touchdowns—at least enough to sway Reid Vick’s way for the Week 3 start against the Jacksonville Jaguars on the road.
Whatever the case, Vick has shown early on that he is fully capable of holding his own with the best quarterbacks in the NFL—at least enough for the chance to prove he can continue that effort into Week 3.