Michael Vick’s new contract

Dante Rones

Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles have come to an agreement to restructure his deal. Michael Vick started his NFL career in 2001, playing for the Atlanta Falcons for six seasons when they took him on as their number one draft pick.

His life and career took a turn for the worse in 2007, when he had to serve 21 months in prison and two months in home confinement for dog fighting. He lost everything – his endorsements, his NFL salary and his houses – and had to file for chapter 11 bankruptcy.

In 2009, Roger Goodell reinstated Michael Vick into the NFL, but Arthur Blank, the owner of the Atlanta Falcons, did not want Vick back on the team. Blank did not receive any trade offers that year, so he released Vick.

By week three of the 2009 season, Vick had signed a one-year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles worth $1.6 million, no money guaranteed. The deal had a team option to keep him through the 2010 season at $5 million.

When Vick joined the Eagles in 2009, he was not the starting quarterback – Donovan McNabb was. In week 13, he got his chance to show the world, the NFL and the Eagles that he still had it, throwing one touchdown and running for a second – his first scores since 2006.

Vick was awarded with the Ed Block Courage Award from his teammates, which honors players who “exemplify commitment to the principles of sportsmanship and courage.”

“It means a great deal to me,” Vick was quoted by espn.com as saying. “I was voted unanimously by my teammates. They know what I’ve been through. It’s been great to come back and have an opportunity to play and be with a great group of guys. I’m just ecstatic about that and I enjoy every day.”

That year the Eagles went 11-5 and made it to the National Football Conference (NFC) wild-card game, losing to the Dallas Cowboys 34-14.

In the 2010 season, the Eagles exercised their team rights to keep Vick for another year. He received his $1.5 million roster bonus, but McNabb was still starting quarterback with Kevin Kolb as the backup.

That season, McNabb was traded to the Washington Redskins and Kevin Kolb was named the starter, though Vick later received that title after Kolb suffered a concussion in a game against the Green Bay Packers.

The Eagles went 10-5 in 2010 and lost to the Green Bay Packers in the wild-card round with a score of 21-16. Vick was named a Pro-Bowler, beat Kolb out for the starting quarterback position and was named the Comeback Player of the Year. He also won the Bert Bell Award in March 2011.

In early 2011, the Philadelphia Eagles put a franchise tag on Vick, and on March 2, he signed his one-year tender. On Aug. 29, both sides reached an agreement on a six-year, $100 million contract.

In the 2011 season, the Eagles went 8-8 under Vick, and 4-12 in 2012 under Vick and rookie QB Nick Foles.

The Philadelphia Eagles restructured their whole coaching staff this year, getting rid of Andy Reid and ending his 13 years in Philadelphia to bring in Chip Kelly. Most people thought that with Reid gone, Vick would be on his way out too; however, Kelly wants to see if this new relationship can work.

Vick was scheduled to receive $3 million of his $16.5 million on Feb. 6. Five days later, he and the Eagles came to an agreement to restructure his six-year, $100 million contract to a one-year, $10 million contract.

This leaves both sides with some flexibility, because if Vick does not fit Kelly’s system, he can leave or be let go from the Eagles without the team owing him any money. Vick has the arm strength and speed on the ground to fit Kelly’s system, though, so it should be a beneficial partnership.

Now all they need to do is build up the offensive line and keep Vick upright, and they have a chance to be the dominant force in the NFC East again.

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