Michael Vick has been in the NFL for 13 years after being removed as the No. 1 overall by the Atlanta Falcons and an infamous prison sentence. Vick is now in an awkward situation after his triumphant rise and injury-riddled fall with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Though uniquely talented, the quaterback’s inconsistent play and frequent injury issues have led to perennially tenuous job security. This year, second-year professional Nick Foles, who took over for an ailing first starter in the season, has played incredibly in Chip Kelly’s system. In fact, Foles has thrown 16 touchdowns, no interceptions and leads the NFL with a 128.0 quarterback rating.
This week, Kelly named Foles the starter for the rest of 2013.
“I feel like I can still start, yeah, in this league,” Vick said to Jeff McLane of The Philadelphia Inquirer.
McLane later pointed out this nugget about the veteran quarterback, a nugget that’ll certainly impact the impending free agent’s future in the NFL: “Vick has missed 16 full games over the last four seasons and left six other games early due to injury.”
Before he was supplanted on the Eagles’ depth chart by Foles, Vick amassed these stats in 2013:
While his passing stats won’t be appealing to many potential employers–although his 8.62 yards-per-attempt average was the highest of his career– the 9.1 yards per carry will. However, there’s no doubting that any NFL team will assume major injury risk with Vick if it decides to sign him in the offseason.
At this point, he’s still an upper-echelon athlete at his position.
Remember, in May, he made waves after he apparently beat former All-Pro running back LeSean McCoy in a foot race after practice:
Because of the athleticism he brings to the quarterback position, Vick’s viability solely depends on the type of offense in which he’d play.
For a coach with a philosophy based in traditional, pocket-passing concepts, Vick will almost assuredly be passed over. No coach will tailor his offensive attack around a somewhat gadgety, 33-year-old signal-caller with a significant injury past.
However, for a coach who wants to run a variety of read-option, Vick could be seen as a cost-effective option who–at the very least–could be used as experienced depth.
It’s nearly impossible to predict which coaches will be fired and who’ll be hired as their replacements heading into the 2014 campaign.