Vick signs with Eagles

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Michael Vick is back in the NFL, landing a job with the Philadelphia Eagles.

 Michael Vick
Larry Rubama

In this photo taken Monday Aug. 3, 2009, Michael Vick, left, and Kevin Stanley visit Landstown High School's first day of football practice in Virginia Beach, Va. Landstown coach Tommy Reamon (not shown) coached Vick at Warwick High School in nearby Newport News. (AP Photo/The Virginian-Pilot, Larry Rubama) ** MAGS OUT, NO TV, NO SALES, NO ARCHIVE, INTERNET OUT **

Agent Joel Segal confirmed the quarterback's signing, shortly before the team announced it in a text message. The Eagles gave Vick a one-year deal with an option for a second year.

The 29-year-old Vick, once the NFL's highest-paid player, has been out of action since 2006. The former Atlanta Falcons star was convicted in August 2007 of conspiracy and running a dogfighting ring, and served 18 of a 23-month sentence in federal prison. He also was suspended indefinitely by the NFL.

Commissioner Roger Goodell conditionally lifted Vick's suspension on July 27, allowing him to sign with a team, practice and play in the last two preseason games. Once the season begins, Vick can participate in all team activities except games, and Goodell said he would consider Vick for full reinstatement by Week 6 (Oct. 18-19) at the latest.

The Eagles went to the playoffs last season under quarterback Donovan McNabb, and are still looking for their elusive first Super Bowl win.

McNabb has led the Eagles to five NFC championship games and one Super Bowl appearance in the last eight years, and was rewarded with a $5.3 million raise in the offseason. The Eagles tore up his old contract with two years remaining, and gave him a new deal worth $24.5 million over the next two seasons.

The team is a surprise landing point for Vick. It was among 26 clubs that said there was no interest in him, but that may have changed when backup Kevin Kolb strained a knee ligament earlier this week. Kolb's injury isn't serious and he's expected to return next week. The Eagles also have veteran A.J. Feeley.

When news of Vick's signing circulated in the press box during the first half of the Eagles' preseason opener against New England, even the team's public relations staff seemed surprised.

The stadium was buzzing by halftime as word spread. Fans standing on the concourse were in disbelief. One guy wondered how quickly he'd be able to buy a Vick jersey. Another asked if this was a joke.

In a "60 Minutes" interview set to air Sunday, Vick accepted blame for not stopping the illegal dogfighting operation he bankrolled.

Vick said he feels "some tremendous hurt behind what happened."

He said he should have taken "the initiative to stop it all ... I didn't."

Asked if he was more concerned about his playing career or the dogs he hurt, Vick replied, "Football don't even matter."

The animal rights group, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, wasted no time reminding people exactly what Vick had done.

"PETA and millions of decent football fans around the world are disappointed that the Eagles decided to sign a guy who hung dogs from trees. He electrocuted them with jumper cables and held them under water," PETA spokesman Dan Shannon said.

"You have to wonder what sort of message this sends to young fans who care about animals and don't want them to be harmed."

Since Andy Reid became the head coach in 1999, the Eagles have avoided players with character issues. The lone exception came in 2004 when Philadelphia acquired wide receiver Terrell Owens. That move paid off when Owens helped lead the Eagles to the Super Bowl in his first season. But T.O. quickly wore out his welcome, criticizing management over a contract dispute and feuding with McNabb. He was released midway through the 2005 season.

What do you think of this story?

Login to post comments

In order to make comments, you must create a subscription.

In order to comment on SunJournal.com, you must hold a valid subscription allowing access to this website. You must use your real name and include the town in which you live in your SunJournal.com profile. To subscribe or link your existing subscription click here.

Login or create an account here.

Our policy prohibits comments that are:

  • Defamatory, abusive, obscene, racist, or otherwise hateful
  • Excessively foul and/or vulgar
  • Inappropriately sexual
  • Baseless personal attacks or otherwise threatening
  • Contain illegal material, or material that infringes on the rights of others
  • Commercial postings attempting to sell a product/item
If you violate this policy, your comment will be removed and your account may be banned from posting comments.

Advertisement

Comments

 's picture

Vick needs to be hung from a

Vick needs to be hung from a tree and zapped a few times. The NFL should be ashamed to let this type of individual back into its program. Baseball nailed Pete Rose for LIFE for fricken gambling, but the NFL welcomes this lowlife with open arms. This is why I watch NASCAR.

 's picture

Can you see the two

Can you see the two MEGA-ego's of Vick & Mc Nabb #1 trying to co-exist with one another as team mates Battling for a stating QB Job???? I Can't IF coach Andy Reid is smart (and I don't put much hope in this) he will insert some plays in the playbook for Vick using the Dolphhins "Wildcat" formation to let Vick run wild.

Advertisement

Stay informed — Get the news delivered for free in your inbox.

I'm interested in ...