Michael Vick Says He Didn’t Want to Play for Eagles

That sound you hear is Michael Vick opening Pandora's Box… or thunder. Yeah, probably thunder.

This morning, GQ posted an article by Deadspin founding editor Will Leitch, who spent time with Vick this summer. Among many, many other interesting tidbits, Vick told Leitch that he didn't want to play in Philadelphia (third-string thing) and would have preferred Cincinnati or Buffalo. The Commish had other ideas:

"I think I can say this now, because it's not going to hurt anybody's feelings, and it's the truth," Vick tells me a few weeks after the commencement ceremony. "I didn't want to come to Philadelphia. Being the third-team quarterback is nothing to smile about. Cincinnati and Buffalo were better options." Those two teams wanted him and would've allowed him to start, but after meeting with commissioner Roger Goodell and other reps from the NFL, Vick was convinced—and granted league approval—to sign with Philly. "And I commend and thank them, because they put me in the right situation."


Oh boy.

Forget about not wanting to play in Philly (he's here now and happy), the real story here, which we can infer from Vick's comments, is that Roger Goodell tampered with the negotiation process. This will be what people talk about today.

Goodell likely understood Vick had a much better chance to succeed under the stable tutelage of Andy Reid and Co., rather than in Cincinnati's halfway house.

Vick, who I've been told has absolutely the worst PR folks around, then opened up about race and dogs…:

Vick, well versed in his talking points on this matter, hesitates to make this a race issue. And yet: "Yeah, you got the family dog and the white picket fence, and you just think that's all there is. Some of us had to grow up in poverty-stricken urban neighborhoods, and we just had to adapt to our environment. I know that it's wrong. But people act like it's some crazy thing they never heard of. They don't know."

I ask Vick if he feels that white people simply don't understand that aspect of black culture. "I think that's accurate," he says. "I mean, I was just one of the ones who got exposed, and because of the position I was in, where I was in my life, it went mainstream. A lot of people got out of it after my situation, not because I went to prison but because it was sad for them to see me go through something that was so pointless, that could have been avoided."


You may not agree- and this certainly doesn't excuse his actions, but Vick is right. It was part of his culture. Of course, the everybody else does it defense is rarely a good one.

You can read the full story here. This should be bloviated about for the next 24 hours or so.

Other Eagles news, if you haven't heard: Jeremy Maclin is fine. No AIDS, no cancer, no mono.


25 Responses

  1. I wouldn’t have wanted to come to Philadelphia either if I was going to be a 3rd string player, but damn, the Bengals and Bills? What the fuck is that about?
    It’s also funny that Rodger Goodell contributed to the demise of Donovan McNabb in Philadelphia.
    Thanks Rodger!!

  2. Part of his culture? Give me a break.
    By that logic, every poor black family in America is breeding, fighting and killing dogs.
    He’s a POS, plain and simple – and if he was a Cowboy or a Giant, we would be destroying him and the team that signed him every single day for it.

  3. He said many times that he expected to be a starter in the NFL when he was the 3rd string QB. I don’t see anything wrong with what he said about Buffalo and Cincinnati. It doesn’t make sense though. Why would Cinci let him start? Carson Palmer was still their starting QB at the time.

  4. Your wantonness usage of the word “bloviated” is not only inaccurate but makes you look quite the ass. That message aside, Vick definitely made the right decision and as much as it pains me to say it, so did Goodell. It’s hard to justify the “ruler, judge, jury” mentality but at times he does get things right.

  5. I picture him saying this after blazing up backstage with some Jamaicans as in Tommy Boy…and as he’s saying this, them all behind the camera going “Noooo!!!!”

  6. Can’t say I blame the guy for wanting to start. Dude didn’t say Philly wasn’t his choice because he didn’t like the fans, city, etc… he said it wasn’t his choice because he wanted to start right away. But, naturally, many people will take that the wrong way and run with it.
    As for Vick being ‘placed’ with the Eagles, I’ve said this for years. Wasn’t it obvious? There is structure and stability in Philly. Chances of him succeeding in Philly or NE over, say, Oakland or Buffalo are significantly greater.
    Regarding white people not understanding black culture, that might be true. There are a lot of ignorant people out there that don’t care to understand others’ cultures. But those people exist in DROVES amongst every culture, not just white americans. And those that do care to learn are often shut out by the very people they are trying to learn about… I speak from personal experience on that one.

  7. $Yo – exactly. Vick never roasted philly for being philly. He’s just a pro-bowler trying to get a starting gig somewhere. No problem in my book. Plus he says that ultimately it was the right decision and he’s thankful. Case closed – he loves philly just like everyone else blessed enough to play here.
    And I agree with him that the perception that he is somehow pure evil because of what he did and not a product of his environment in any way is bull. The dude grew up with very different (nonexistent?) set of morals etc and didnt know right from wrong re the canine community and probably a lot else. I think we can all agree that people that fuck up in society generally are products of their environment and not criminals/evil mofos in the womb. right?
    Anyway all in all vick is the fucking boss and i love that dude.

  8. vick just can’t keep his mouth shut. He refers to being the “norm” in a poverty stricken culture but when he was making $100 million in endorsements and salary he had no excuses.

  9. He’s absolutely right. A lot of white people DON’T understand (I am white). I have lived my whole life in Atlantic City, where I see a different black culture, and the shoobies, as I may call them, just don’t get the city blacks.
    Southern blacks are a whole different thing. And though I’m not from the south, I have a friend who is 51 and from Miami and he fully sympathizes with Vick because he’s seen the same shit Vick did. He never got involved but he knew it was happening and he knew all the details.
    So yea, Vick is right that white people just don’t understand the culture. As for calling him a POS, no one has the right to judge a man before getting to know the man. Do I know him personally? No. But I’ve opened my mind to understand him before judging him and I think a lot of people need to do that as well before they form an opinion.

  10. Thats complete bullshit. There are plenty of poor white people out there too. So I thought that comment was somewhat ignorant.

  11. I hate Michael Vick, i’m white, I grew up in port richmond, i don’t remember any white picket fences and about half the knuckleheads from my neighborhood are doa’s, I had the brains and determination to make my situation better so i got out. I never felt it necssary to abuse anything or anybody. Fuck Michael Vick, he’s always putting out excuses for why he did what he did and that’s WHY i hate him. I’d hate that mother fucker if he was purple.

  12. I wish he would just go away because I never wanted him here either! Guess what Vick, you weren’t my first choice either!

  13. people need to chill out with the attempted grammar and spelling corrections. Who gives a fuck? its not the NYT and your corrections are generally wrong anyway. waste of the comment board imo.

  14. Uh, there are plenty of black people, many who grew up poor as well, who don’t understand the draw of animal abuse either.
    Weak excuses for cruelty.
    Using that excuse, slavery was never *wrong*, it was just part of the culture of the time and we can’t blame those who owned slaves and treated them poorly because they didn’t know any better.
    Yeah, I don’t buy that, either.
    It’s certainly comparing apples and oranges, but the cultural comparisons stand up when comparing the mindset of slavery-era America and the mindset of dog-fighting apologists.

  15. I hate this guy too…. i cant believe he pulled the freakin race card on this dogfighting bullshit…. i agree whole heartedly with MM above…. I grew up poor in a drug infested and crime riddled area, I worked hard got a good job and now own my own home in a nice blue collar area of DE. Vick(and his supporters) saying that he did it b/c of his surroundings/culture would be like me saying I sold drugs b/c everyone else around me was too…. at some point in life(especially after making millions) you need to find the people/things that bring you down and put distance between them

  16. Vick is the man, paid his debt to society and is killing it now. Im white,from the burbs of philly and understand black culture to some degree (thanks to NWA and lots of hours spent in front of BET)…
    While i love dogs and could never imagine doing what he did, BUT its an animal. They torture and kill 6 bulls every bullfight in Spain. Lets not pretend blacks are the only ones that have dog fights either. Im sure there are plenty of hick methhead white people doing the same things.

  17. I’m quite aware of what bloviate means, but carrying on a discussion is not really bloviating if it’s multifaceted an full of insight. Moreover, that’s probably the 3rd time in 3 days I’ve seen it and while it’s a nice word it’s become overused on your blog, duder.
    I moved on.
    Some piece of shit they have at Yahoo! I hate the way these sheltered columnists insert hyperbole surrounding the stigma of dog fighting into their extremely opinionated blogs, insinuating that Vick is a dog fighting piece of shit. As a matter of fact, I’m done with sensationalist media outlets such as Yahoo! I only go their because they have “positive” stories and my Fantasy Football. Of course you can’t comment, either: http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/blog/shutdown_corner/post/Vick-on-dogfighting-in-GQ-8216-People-act-lik?urn=nfl-wp5294

  18. What most of you don’t get is it isn’t just ‘black’ culture, its regional black culture. You are maintaining your ignorance by (once again) lumping all into one. Have any of you ever been to Appalachia? You want to see some poor white idiots doing the same damn thing? Because you will. Philadelphia black culture is different than Virginia black culture just the same as Philly white culture is different than Kentucky white culture. It’s all relevant, mostly regional, a lot less to do with race than we seemingly want to admit.

  19. I’m not sure this is actually a race card issue of more of a product of one’s environment issue. It seems that Vick didn’t think much of this at the time, but has hence cleaned up his act. I remember him talking on one show about how he is now working to educate children and teens about the dangers of participating in such illegal activity. The guy realizes what he did was wrong and shouldn’t still be faulted. He’s cleaned up his act.

  20. “A lot of people got out of it after my situation, not because I went to prison but because it was sad for them to see me go through something that was so pointless..”
    Oh, because going to jail for murder is pointless.
    BTW, my skin is white, and I live in a predominately black, mid to lower class neighborhood. Does that mean I’m not considered poor?
    What a freaking undeducated, race card throwing idiot.

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