Is Ted Thompson being coy about personnel matters? Or is there something here with Michael Vick?
It’s like when you’re high school. There’s that girl out there. You hear she likes you. But nothing legitimate is coming from her mouth. All your mutual friends are abuzz with the possibility of a relationship, but between the two of you, neither of you are saying anything. You’re saying that you want real concrete proof she’s into you; she’s sending out mixed messages. You hear she just wants to hook up with you and you aren’t the type she’d actually date. Or maybe she just wants a “summer fling” with you. Basically, you have no idea what’s going on, despite what everyone else is saying.
That’s how it is now. Thompson isn’t giving a straight answer on what the Packers want to do. Are the Packers even interested in Vick in the first place? Do the Packers just want Vick as gimmick player? Do the Packers want Vick just for this year as a backup for Aaron Rodgers that could be more reliable than Matt Flynn or Brian Brohm? Or do the Packers see Vick as a long-term player in their scheme? It feels like high school all over again.
Scenario 1: There is no interest.
The rumors are just the product of those curses called mutual friends. You come to find that your friends were just throwing names out there as possibilities and liked the sound of this. In their minds, it’s a perfect fit. You two seem picture perfect to each other, but in reality, it would never work. It’s your friends making something out of nothing.
The Packers aren’t interested in this scenario. Thompson is sticking to his reputation of not commenting on personnel issues until there is something concrete. Thompson just doesn’t want to say no to Vick because he wants to leave the door open just in case there’s that one in a million chance the Packers need Vick. The Packers GM is just making a statement and is letting the media run with it and assume what they want. Some of the more anti-Ted Thompson camps should have some pretty interesting things to say about these comments, but they appear to be innocuous. Not saying anything about personnel has been his game, and he’s sticking to it.
Scenario 2: The hook up.
The girl just wants you for your body. She’s attracted to you, but she doesn’t care about anything else that has to do with you. It’s one night or bust. It’s just up to you to decide whether or not you want to be pulled into this. After all, she is a pretty enticing option and there is a bit of chemistry. There is the slight chance it’ll go beyond that one night, but it’s anybody’s guess how far it can go.
In this option, Vick is the gimmick player. The Packers feel they need to make a splash. The Detroit Lions got Matthew Stafford in the draft. The Chicago Bears acquired Jay Cutler from the Broncos. The Minnesota Vikings drafted Percy Harvin out of Florida for some use in the Wildcat. Yes, the Packers drafted B.J. Raji at No. 9 and traded back up into the first round (an OMG IS THIS REALLY HAPPENING?!?!?! moment with Thompson) for Clay Matthews. Both of these guys are great for the defense and really signal the turn around that is happening under Dom Capers, but offense sells tickets and makes the highlights. What did the Packers do on offense? Nothing. I mean, the drafting of Jamon Meredith and T.J. Lang did do something to add competition to the offensive line, but as much as I love the offensive line, it won’t be a conversation topic on SportsCenter. Vick adds this to the offense. How are they going to use it? What crazy formation does Mike McCarthy have thought up for Vick? He is the innovator behind the Big 5 that utilizes all of Green Bay’s wide receiver talent. What could he do with the Wildcat? The possibilities are limitless. But lying under all of this is the possibility of this being a one-time deal. Vick could only be in Green Bay for 12 games as an experiment. After the season he could be cut loose while the Packer pursue a more permanent Wildcat or gimmick player. It could be strictly to keep pace with Detroit, Chicago, Minnesota, and the changing National Football League.
Scenario 3: The summer fling.
You and your lady friend get to talking, and you feel that you two have some chemistry and it could go places, but once you get around to school and life in general, you two don’t really have time for each other. Summer is great because you can see each other multiple times a week and just spend a lot of “romantic” time together talking about how you wish summer could never end, but before you know it, it’s back to reality and you both part ways, never to really see each other again. Of course, you meet randomly, check in every once in a while to see how things are going, but you aren’t too involved in each others lives. You appreciate what happened, but it was best to be contained by that time.
Scenario 3 is similar to Scenario 2, but at the same time it is different. The Packers bring Vick in, not as a gimmick player, but as a backup quarterback to Rodgers. Flynn and Brohm haven’t been too too impressive, so it seems logical to bring Vick in. Vick’s played quarterback before, so backing up Rodgers would be a good role for him. He wouldn’t be expected to be a star contributor from Day 1, while he still could make token appearances as a Wildcat or change of pace quarterback. Also, being a backup quarterback to Rodgers could be a springboard for Vick. Other teams could see how he is progressing with integrating back into a team and how he is at learning an offense. The time spent playing in games could be used as an audition period and a team could trade for him at the deadline or after the season, or if the Packers sign him to just a one-year deal he could be free to sign with a team that needs his services. This could benefit both sides, as it gives Vick an opportunity and it gives Brohm and/or Flynn more time to become adequate NFL backups.
Scenario 4: The relationship.
You and your girl decide it’s go time. You have chemistry, everything is great, you commit to each other. You’ve gone over certain things that are important to you, like your allegiances to certain teams becoming more important than the relationship and what kind of music you can tolerate. Everything is compatible, so you have a girlfriend. For the long haul.
Vick and the Packers decide that everything looks great. The situation is great for him. Green Bay is the smallest media market in the NFL, and although everyone knows how much of a circus it can be (see: Favre, Brett; Summer 2008), he won’t be under a microscope as much as he would be in a larger market (although the way ESPN covers things, it’s hard to tell). This relationship wouldn’t end with Vick in a starting job obviously, but it would end up with him being a contributing member of the Packers organization as a Wildcat/running back/wide receiver/backup quarterback. Vick would show up in the stat sheet frequently and mesh well with Rodgers and the whole bunch. Of course he would cost either Brohm or Flynn a spot on the team, but it would be for the greater good of the team. Vick could use the relationship as a jumping off point, if the feeling is mutual, for something better, but he was a success in Green Bay.
Scenario 5: A break up.
So things just didn’t work out. Turns out she didn’t really like that music she said she did and she won’t give you your alone time with your team. Things just aren’t meant to be, right? There’s other fish in the sea.
So Vick comes in, spends a year filling a utility role, and things just aren’t right. He couldn’t totally mesh, missing training camp and the first few weeks of the season. He can’t get rolling out of the Wildcat, and the team can’t pick it up in the short time period they had to learn it so everyone feels clueless. He can’t get it going when he has to come in relieve Rodgers either and the whole just kind of fails and disappears from view.
Scenario 6: Marriage.
Scenario 4 evolves and you and your girlfriend get hitched in a little shindig. You all live happily ever after. There’s kids and stuff. Fun stuff you see in movies.
Vick is a career Packer. All is forgiven for him defeating the Packers at Lambeau back in 2003 and the public finally accepts for his mistakes. It’s great stuff. He gets a ring (or two) with the Packers and keeps his nose clean. He proves Roger Goodell right for reinstating him. The dream scenario.
Scenario 7: Divorce. A messy one at that.
So turns out you and your girlfriend got hitched in Vegas and it’s just bad. Fighting. Crying. Broken hearts. It is definitely not meant to be. Once you two get that annulment or those divorce papers filed, you’ll never see each other again.
The Vick experiment fails in Green Bay, epically and publicly. Vick does something off the field that is just embarrassing and gets himself suspended again and banned from the NFL, or McCarthy and Vick don’t click at all and get in some public disputes. The players chime (or Tweet) in their problems with the experiment and the team morale collapses. Pretty soon it’s Top 10 Draft Pick all over again. People lose their jobs. Just garbage. The last thing anyone wants to happen.
I’m hoping for Scenario 4 or 6. They would be the best for the Packers and Vick, who I’ll have my two cents on up soon.
Any other scenarios you can think of that could happen to Vick and the Packers? Let me know in the comments.
Topics: Aaron Rodgers, B.J. Raji, Brett Favre, Brian Brohm, Chicago Bears, Clay Matthews, Detroit Lions, Dom Capers, Jamon Meredith, Jay Cutler, Matt Flynn, Matthew Stafford, Michael Vick, Mike McCarthy, Minnesota Vikings, Percy Harvin, T.J. Lang, Ted Thompson