Is he better than Vick? No. But can he fill the same niche? Absolutely.
My point is this, most people that are "talking up" Vick and his comeback are talking up the fact of how great a fit in the wildcat he will be. And if Vick is as good as those people say he is today, then they are absolutely right.
But at the same time, almost every team in the league already has a player on their roster that would be a pretty darn good player in the wildcat, including a guy like T.J. Duckett, who IMO would probably be only a step down from Ronnie Brown if used properly.
Coupling that with the fact that by not signing Vick, none of these teams will have to spend any more $$$ on his contract, won't have to hire extra security personnel to deal with the picket signs gathered outside their stadiums and practice facilities, won't have the answer the same question a billion times each and every day for the coming months, and won't have to turn on the TV to hear some other know-it-all talking head critiquing their decision and thus the caliber of human beings their organization presents, then I personally don't see any upside to signing Vick...this year.
And still I'm having a hard time believing that so many teams will begin adopting the Wildcat left and right this year. I heard a stat in the lead up to the draft that the prototypical wildcat team, the Miami Dolphins, only used the formation on 5% of the total offensive plays in 2007.
Even if a team took that and doubled it, we're talking about what amounts to being 5 or 6 plays a game. So the allure of the "Ultimate Wildcat player" to me is not all that big to me. Maybe I'm just being too pragmatic.
Maybe if you could prove to me that the alternatives I named couldn't be productive in the formation, I might buy into it more.
To me the risk/reward thing is askew. You might say there is very little risk considering a team will only be paying him around $700K. All the baggage that Vick's presence brings to the table makes it a riskier decision. This is not like signing your typical "reclamation project" like the 49ers picking up Jimmy Williams this past January. Due to the media scrutiny that comes with adding Vick to your roster, you better be darn sure he's going to pay big dividends, otherwise heads might roll. There better be firm congruity throughout that organization or when it comes time to renegotiate a contract, this "little misfire" might blow up in someone's face.
However, at some point he's gonna have to be sincere, but if he does that then will anyone really care? American's love comebacks. People are acting like the Peta angle is more severe than say other crimes, while all are inappropriate for these famous athletes. I'm not seeing where he should be punished more than say... Crackman Jones, steroids in baseball, Kobe, etc., all become less glaring with time.
The disconnect I'm hearing is the belief that not letting Vick back into the NFL is "punishing him further." Playing in the league is a gift and a privilege. There are thousands of guys that spent half of their lives working their butt off to get into the league, got 1 chance to prove they belong and because they ran a 4.62 40 instead of a 4.45 at their pro day or whatever they never got that chance. And we're
punishing Vick further by saying to him, "Hey Mike you were given a free ride to a school that rejects thousands of other kids, which you squandered, and afterwards you earned some $80 million, which you squandered, were given multiple opportunities to come clean about felonious activiites, which you squandered, so we're going to pass on letting you back into the league because we got the odd feeling that you might squander that too."
Look, I'm all about helping ex-cons. If we spent half the time, money, and effort on figuring out ways how to keep guys out of prison as we do in figuring out new ways and laws to put them in, then this country would be a whole lot safer and better if you ask me.
It'd be interesting to see just how sincere and remorseful Vick is if he wasn't millions of $$$ in the hole.