Top 5 NFL Landing Spots for Michael Vick in 2013
Michael Vick: Top 5 NFL Landing Spots for 2013
The inevitable release of Michael Vick is fast approaching, and it’s time to start seriously considering where the 11th year QB should land next season.
Vick has spent the past four seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, but the emergence of rookie QB Nick Foles looks to be shoving Vick out of town. Foles has only really had one above average performance over his first five NFL starts, but the Eagles have high hopes for the rook.
There was a lot of controversy early on this season regarding whether Vick or Foles should be the Eagles’ starter in light of Vick’s early season turnover trouble.
But when Vick went down with a concussion in the first half of the Eagles’ Week 10 match-up with the Dallas Cowboys, it was time for the Foles era to begin. It has since been largely assumed that Vick has taken the field as an Eagle for the last time.
These assumptions were confirmed when Eagles head coach Andy Reid announced following Week 13 that Foles would maintain his starting role for the remainder of the season.
If the Eagles do decide to release Vick at season’s end, they will not owe him anymore money on his contract.
So once he is released, Vick will be an unrestricted free agent, free to sign wherever he pleases. This raises the ever so ponderous question, where will Vick play next season?
There are multiple factors to consider concerning Vick’s next home, including what teams have a definite, glaring void at quarterback, and what organizations are willing to take on a notoriously controversial character like Vick. It has also been made clear by Vick that he is only interested in a starting role.
Take a look at the top five NFL teams that I expect Vick to start for in 2013.
5. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars are a team that I could certainly see taking interest in Vick, but I just don’t know if Vick would want to sign with such a seemingly hopeless squad.
With Jaguars WR Justin Blackmon putting up several impressive performances this season, and RB Maurice Jones-Drew as one of the league’s best, Vick would have some weapons to work with. But in all, the Jaguars are a team who look to be far from greatness, so they are not a very attractive option.
If he does actually want to take a job with Jacksonville, for whatever reason, I’m sure the Jaguars will have a contract waiting for Vick’s signature.
The Jags should be pouncing on every chance to replace their bust-in-the-making QB Blaine Gabbert.
4. Cleveland Browns
The Browns offer an intriguing landing spot for Vick considering they have a stud of a young running back in rookie Trent Richardson, an underrated receiving core, and an impressive offensive line.
Rookie QB Brandon Weeden has been manning the starting role for the Browns, but has shown a massive amount of rookie jitters and passing woes so far in his career.
I have no doubt that Vick would immediately beat out Weeden in a quarterback competition, while Vick still has plenty of gas left in the tank and Weeden has a long way to go in the NFL. It would even be a positive experience for Weeden to watch and learn from Vick for a few years.
Lastly, ex-Eagles president Joe Banner is now running the Browns’ front office, and has always liked Vick. Depending on how much the Browns are willing to offer Vick, Cleveland could be an attractive suitor.
3. Arizona Cardinals
There is one player in Arizona who poses as the most attractive bait for Vick, and that is without a doubt All-Pro Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald.
A free-agent quarterback like Vick has a lot of things to consider when looking for a new team, and the skill level of the squad’s wide receivers is always high on that list.
The Cardinals have one of the most wide open quarterback vacancies in the entire league, with Kevin Kolb, John Skelton and Ryan Lindley all proving that they have no business starting in the NFL.
Vick would also have Andre Roberts at receiver for the Cardinals, who has proven to be a shifty and explosive athlete. Rookie WR Michael Floyd is also expected to become a dangerous and versatile weapon, as he was a decorated high first-round draft pick.
If Vick were to be plugged into this offense, he could certainly thrive with the help of a steady athlete at starting running back.
2. New York Jets
In the past week, there have been a slew of reports predicting that Vick is likely headed to the Jets. The ever-struggling Jets QB Mark Sanchez was finally benched for good this week, and the organization decided that they will finish the season with Greg McElroy behind center.
The alarming thing about this decision is that projected backup QB Tim Tebow is now healthy, and was blatantly passed over for the starting role. Multiple reports have also surfaced this week stating that the Jets will be looking to trade Sanchez, and will drop Tebow at season’s end.
The terrible play of Sanchez has masked the fact that the Jets actually have a decent offensive line, and Vick could certainly complement the unit.
Vick is the epitome of the type of player that the Jets love to bring in, considering he is a high-profile individual who brings about plenty of controversy and media coverage.
I think that Rex Ryan has a good chance at sticking around as the Jets head coach for a few more seasons, and Vick could be the player who effectively saves his job.
1. Buffalo Bills
When it comes to the question of which team is the single best fit for Vick, my confidently emphatic answer is, the Bills.
Bills head coach Chan Gailey and his coaching staff are very comfortable with Vick’s style of play, as they have effectively run the wildcat package with QB-turned-WR Brad Smith. Gailey also once coached Kordell Stewart, and signed Vince Young as a backup for the Bills this season.
The Bills present a very attractive young offense for Vick, with RB C.J. Spiller and WR Stevie Johnson highlighting the unit. Recently injured Bills RB Fred Jackson is also a dangerous runner, and the duo of him and Spiller could help take a lot of the pressure off of Vick.
And considering the Bills also possess a pretty solid offensive line, this team is quickly turning into the front-runner when it comes to Vick’s future.
Current starting QB Ryan Fitzpatrick has been all too ordinary as the Bills front-man during his tenure, and shows no real potential as a reliable, long-term starter.
If Vick is indeed signed by the Bills this off-season, their fans should feel fortunate to have corralled a veteran quarterback, who has the immediate potential to make a post-season run.
Please follow Joe on Twitter @Joe_RantNFL for all Eagles/NFL insight.