I wrote an entry for this blog back in December, that I was saving to post until the end of the regular season. It was one that was similar to the Jeff Schultz column that was written on Thursday.
I wrote this entry following the Falcons win over the Bucs. I was saving it for the end of the year, to be fair since at the point when it was written, the Falcons playoff hopes were very much alive. And despite the poor finish, instead of posting it, I decided to just sit on it. But now with all the “piling on” that is occurring in the media and among the fan base, I figured why not join in? So here it is…
I have ceased being a Michael Vick fan. Up until now, I considered him my favorite Falcon player. The fantasy is over for me. This coming from a guy that grew up in Newport News, that saw Michael Vick play in high school, that saw him almost single-handedly will his team to a national title at Tech, that was gleeful on the verge of tears upon discovery of the news that the Falcons had swapped first round picks with the Chargers in 2001, and that all psyched about the Falcons going to the Super Bowl when the Falcons-Eagles game kicked off two years ago.
Well I’m saying it’s over. I recall in the week leading up to the Packers debacle in 2005, talking smack on a Packers’ fan site, saying things like the majority of Packers fans were still delusional if they still believed Brett Favre was “Brett Favre.” I cited a statistic that indicated since 2002, that in games that were resolved by 8 points or less in which they started and finished, Michael Vick was 13-1 while Favre was 6-12. Indicating to me that the former mojo that Favre had in close games, was now embodied in Vick. Well of course, the Falcons lost that Packer game by 8 points. And since citing that statistic, Vick is 2-3 in such games. I realize not totally convincing evidence, but enough for me to come to the conclusion that I have become exactly what I chastised those Packer fans for being: delusional.
When did I come to this conclusion? It was after the Falcons lost to the Browns. Two weeks prior, Vick had perhaps the best game of his career, but in the subsequent pair of games, had been average by the most optimistic of standards, and was shown up in his own house by none other than Charlie Frye. At that point it hit me that Vick would never be a consistently good quarterback. It hit me that he would never live up to the expectations of his lofty contract. It hit me that he was just as headache-inducing as his lesser cousin.
So you ask what am I to do? Am I going to start rooting against Vick? No. Am I going to become a Matt Schaub enthusiast? No. I’ll simply do nothing more than continue to support the Falcons with a sliver of hope that I’m wrong. In the time being, I’ll just be waiting for the Falcons organization and front office brass to get on the same page as I am and decide to go in a different direction. It’s really nothing new for me, as I was in a similar mindset over the last three years of Dan Reeves tenure in Atlanta. My hope however is that unlike Taylor Smith, Arthur Blank is smarter than I think he is, and will overlook things like jersey sales and marketing gimmicks, and simply do what is best for this football team and organization and get rid of Michael Vick.