By Steve Silverman
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The presence of Mike Vick in the lineup for the Philadelphia Eagles could have a huge impact on New York’s football future – both short-term and long-term.
The Eagles had basically washed their hands of the highly paid Vick because he struggled to perform in the first half of the season. While the Eagles’ offensive line was putting on one of the worst performances in recent memory, Vick was making things worse for Philadelphia.
It seemed that he lost the ability to read where the blitz was coming from and he was getting hammered like few other quarterbacks.
But how does a former great quarterback lose that ability? Perhaps he never had it.
Vick may not have needed that talent earlier in his career because he was such a brilliant athlete and could outrun and use his quickness to get away from the pass rush, buy time in the pocket and then make plays with his arm or feet.
Vick will return to the lineup in what is almost certainly Andy Reid’s last game as head coach for the Philadelphia Eagles. Reid’s team certainly has tormented the Giants over the years in games played at Giants or MetLife Stadium. The Eagles have won 8 of their last 10 road games against the Giants.
That’s probably not going to help them in this game, as the Eagles have been dreadful this season. But if Vick can somehow avoid the turnovers that have impacted his play and the Eagles can get off to an early lead, there’s no guarantee at this point that the Giants will respond.
They certainly had no answers for the Atlanta Falcons or Baltimore Ravens the past two weeks.
It may not matter at all for the Giants. If they are going to emerge as a playoff team, the dominoes have to fall their way.
They need the Lions to upset the Bears, they need the Packers to beat the Vikings and the Redskins must beat the Cowboys. The Lions have been awful, but they hate the Bears the way the Eagles hate the Cowboys. Detroit’s stumbling head coach Jim Schwartz would like nothing better than to ruin the Bears’ season.
Vick knows that he will not be brought back to Philadelphia next year. This season finale against the Giants is a chance for him to show the NFL that he can still play and still be a difference maker for all the teams that need a quarterback.
One of those teams also calls MetLife Stadium home. If Vick can play well, avoid the hard hits and wreak havoc on the Giants’ vulnerable defense, the Jets may be interested in giving him a call as soon as the Eagles let him go.
The Jets know that they can’t go into the 2013 season with Mark Sanchez under center. Finding a Russell Wilson or RGIII in the draft would clearly be the way to go, but a year like this with utterly fantastic play by the rookie quarterbacks may never happen again.
The Jets are going to have to take it any way they can get it. Scouts will analyze West Virginia’s Geno Smith, USC’s Matt Barkley and Tyler Wilson of Arkansas, but quarterbacks like Wilson, RGIII and Andrew Luck are not easy to find.
Could Vick resurrect himself once again and find himself wearing a different shade of green next year?
The answer may start to unfold Sunday.
Which NFL uniform do you expect Vick to be wearing next season? Sound off below…