The Philadelphia Eagles have made it look like Feb. 6 was D-Day for Michael Vick. For months, everyone figured that because the Eagles owed Vick $3 million on Feb. 6, he would be cut before that date. Yet CBS Sports and the Philadelphia Inquirer allege that this supposed hard and fast deadline has become irrelevant.
CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora wrote on Jan. 28 that the $3 million bonus “is not a concern” for the Eagles right now. In fact, the decision on whether to keep Vick, cut him or trade him may not be made for another month, since the next official league year begins on Mar. 13.
The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff McLane further explained that Philadelphia isn’t even on the hook for $3 million next week anyway. Thanks to a provision in Vick’s contract, the Eagles would only owe him this money if “no one else picked him up” or “if someone signed him for less than $3 million.”
After months of buzz that the Eagles absolutely had to cut Vick on Feb. 6 to save money, this revelation has come fairly suddenly. Just when it looked like things would finally hit the home stretch with Vick, in one fashion or another, it may take weeks more to settle his fate in Philadelphia.
This was the consequence in hiring Chip Kelly as head coach, since his usual offensive system is a much better fit for Vick and his skills than it is for Nick Foles. If Kelly can’t find an alternative to any of them, then Vick would be the most likely starter. However, if the Eagles get rid of him before they find a new starter in the draft or free agency, they would be in big trouble if they can’t get anyone.
As such, with free agency starting on Mar. 11 and the draft set for a month later, the only rush to cut Vick would be to save money. Since it is just coming out that Philadelphia can still save the $3 million for a while longer -- which might have been valuable to know much earlier -- its big quarterback debate might have only just begun.
When Vick got injured and couldn’t win while he was healthy, the Eagles’ faithful couldn’t get rid of him fast enough. However, their hopes may have been foiled for at least another month, if not much longer.