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Embracing Vick sets everybody back

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Jason Whitlock

Jason Whitlock writes about the sports world from every angle, including those other writers can't imagine or muster courage to address. His columns are humorous, thought-provoking, agenda-free, honest and unpredictable. E-mail him, follow his Twitter or become a fan of Jason Whitlock on Facebook.

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Let’s keep it real. Michael Vick is not the first man to pull out after three minutes and call it 30 under oath.

Too much is being made of Vick’s conflicting, nightclub-exit timeline.

Depending on traffic, Vick might be telling the truth. He and his entourage could’ve been “long gone” when a bullet dropped Quanis Phillips outside the restaurant that hosted Vick’s 30th birthday party.

Vick and his lawyer told police and the media that the Philadelphia quarterback left the scene 10 to 30 minutes before Phillips, a co-defendant in Vick’s dogfighting case, was shot. According to the restaurant owner, video surveillance proves Vick and his crew departed just a few short minutes before bullets were fired from the same direction as Vick’s exiting entourage.

So what? Do we run the QB formerly known as Ron Mexico out of professional football because three minutes felt like 30?

I say no.

NFL commissioner/top cop Roger Goodell should not bail out the Philadelphia Eagles by taking action against the Avon Barksdale of football. The more appropriate punishment would be to leave Vick’s cancerous carcass inside the Philly locker room, a fitting payback for the way the organization treated classy QB Donovan McNabb.

Look, I tried to get on board with the Vick reclamation project. I’m sympathetic to the plight of ex-cons. Re-entry into mainstream society can be very difficult for a parolee. I was proud that Andy Reid and McNabb took on the challenge of trying to rehabilitate Vick.

Things have not worked out. The Eagles kicked my favorite active QB (McNabb) to the curb. And Vick has shown no legitimate commitment to developing as an NFL quarterback. Tom Brady and Peyton Manning don’t have reality TV shows. They also don’t throw “white linen” birthday parties at local nightclubs.

 

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Vick craves street cred more than quarterback credibility. That’s always been his problem.

Remember when Avon Barksdale got sprung from prison in Season 3 of "The Wire"? Stringer Bell (McNabb) had everything laid out for Avon — a plush condo overlooking the harbor, legitimate businesses and a Salt-n-Pepa welcome-home team compliments of Tony Soprano’s Bada Bing.

But that wasn’t enough for Avon. He just had to hear his name ring out on those Baltimore corners. Avon had to take his corners back from Marlo Stanfield. Dumbass.

Vick still wants to be king of the 'hood. He wants his name to ring out in Newport News. Dumbass.

And all of his defenders/enablers are just as stupid.

What’s always bothered me about Vick is that he’s far more beloved in the black community than McNabb. It’s mind-boggling to me.

No QB in the history of the league has done more damage to the reputation of and the opportunities afforded to black quarterbacks than Michael Vick. And I say that knowing full well that as you read this, JaMarcus Russell is likely somewhere scarfing down hot wings at an all-you-can-eat buffet while wearing $2 million in designer jewelry.

Vick is a nightmare. When he wasn’t setting fire to his groupie conquests as Ron Mexico, he was bunkered in his estate smoking kush and mastering Xbox Madden football. In his spare time, he trained dogs to maim and fight. He hoodwinked Arthur Blank into a $100-million payday and then went to jail.

And we wonder why NFL management (Jeff Ireland) chooses to ignore common decency and bombard young black kids (Dez Bryant) with insulting pre-draft questions.

They’re afraid of getting in bed with the next Michael Vick. But he’s a hero, a ghetto icon.

And McNabb is a sellout or soft. McNabb is constantly blasted by media idiots who think he needs to engage Terrell Owens, DeSean Jackson or some other diva receiver in verbal warfare. The idiots believe an emotional tantrum would be a show of “leadership” by McNabb. Dumbasses.

McNabb’s close relationship/partnership with Andy Reid was leadership. The partnership McNabb builds with Mike Shanahan in Washington is the kind of leadership that will create opportunities for other black QBs.

McNabb has spent more than a decade in the league focused on doing the things necessary to become a Super Bowl-winning quarterback. He’s never been properly appreciated by the people his conduct directly benefits. The NAACP in Philadelphia criticized McNabb for transitioning into a dropback passer.

Philly deserves Michael Vick. The city had one of the league’s best for 11 years and never demanded that Eagles management consistently support him with top-flight personnel.

And maybe we (black folks) deserve Vick, too. We shower him with undying loyalty even though his actions undermine our progress.

E-mail Jason or follow him on Twitter. Media requests for Mr. Whitlock should be directed to Fox Sports PR.

Tagged: Eagles, Redskins, Michael Vick

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