Monday, August 17, 2009

Top 10 Vickmageddon Moments

As predicted, the protests against Mr. Excitement are quickly galvanizing support for the man. It's also let loose the following moments of truly exceptional public discourse.

1) Chase Utley's wife, who does charitable work with the SPCA when she's not saying regrettable things about adoption, making the completely defensible point that the Philadelphia Eagles should have contacted her before making the signing, since football teams always ask the wives of baseball players for permission on player moves

2) Callers to sports radio talk shows drawing really unfortunate comparisons to Vick getting a job after prison, and their own selves or relations not being as fortunate

3) PETA considering protests at games, because what Philly Fan really needs, more than anything, is a televised opportunity to show how tolerant they can be of dissent

4) Vick going on "60 Minutes" to say that he "deserved to lose $135 million," which sounds nice enough, until you consider that every public apologist now has to put a price tag on things

5) Vick, again on "60 Minutes", admitting that he cried in prison, but thankfully, without any unfortunate details on the events that happened before the tears

6) Andy Reid playing the "I've known people who went to jail" card, which sounds important until you realize that he just *might* have been able to prevent the people he knows from going there in the first place

7) Any number of people thinking that the Vick signing makes the Eagles a Super Bowl favorite, which is a little surprising, in that most people haven't seen Vick stop the run as a middle linebacker

8) The truly unfortunate replay of the old Whoopi Goldberg line about how dog bloodsport is just part of the culture and should be tolerated/understood/minimized

9) Discussions about the relative merits and demerits of cockfighting, MMA, vegetarianism, hunting, drug dealing and any number of other hopeless tangents

10) Any number of people wanting to discuss their views on criminal sentencing, since they have decades of expertise in the matter

Anyway... as a fan of the laundry, I'm still not thrilled with having to root for this guy. But the reality is that I'm probably not going to have to root for him very often, since he is, well, a back-up quarterback. I'm also not going to have to worry very much about his injury issues or his accuracy issues, because he's, um, a back-up quarterback.

And as such, there's no reason to compare him to Donovan McNabb, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees or Tom Brady. Instead, I get to compare him to David Carr, Todd Collins, and Jon Kitna. Or Vince Young, Jeff Garcia, Chris Simms, Derek Anderson or Matt Leinart. He looks really good compared to those guys.

In other words... we're starting to accept it. And if Vick winds up making some big plays out of the Wildcat, helping to overcome what is looking to be a very worrisome offensive line that might have to go back to the future with prehistoric Jon Runyan?

Well, we just might start to like it. Especially if Vick continues to say all the right things to the media, and continues to look like more mature than the unhinged people who will go into full-court puling over the move, no matter what he does.

Because, well, Vick could donate every dollar he makes for the rest of his life to the SPCA or PETA, and it wouldn't be enough for some people. He could take a vow of silence, bleach his skin, become a vegetarian, acquire religion, commit hari-kari, etc., etc... and it really wouldn't matter for some folks.

And that kind of thing, frankly, just never plays well in the court of public opinion, regardless of the individual or the crime. Long-term hatred of a person, even if that person actually deserves your scorn, leaves you unhinged; it marginalizes your position. (See protests against GW Bush and, sigh, Barack Obama.) So long as Vick stays out of trouble, the tide will -- slowly -- move back towards equilibrium.

So if you really want Michael Vick out of football, your best move is to give him just as much attention as you might any other backup QB, and wait for the Eagles to realize that his flaws aren't coachable at his age, or that his quicks have left him in the Crossbar Hotel. Because, honestly, whether or not he's got a gig is beyond your words, and mine. It'll come down to the games, which is all that the people you are protesting care about.

1 comment:

Tracer Bullet said...

My solution? Vegan fighting. Lock two pasty, skinny white guys with dreadlocks who stink of patchooli in a cage with nothing but their dream journals and let it rip.

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