Vick was ready to move on from the Eagles after a very bumpy 2012 season. His offensive line ripped apart by injuries, the 32-year-old had his worst campaign since taking over as the team’s starter. He sustained a concussion in November against the Cowboys, lost his job to Nick Foles, and then was forced into action in the regular-season finale — a 42-7 loss to the Giants. Fed up by the group’s lack of effort, he ripped into his teammates once the 4-12 season had mercifully come to an end.
“If guys cared, if they focused their attention on something other than what’s going on around them [it could have been different],” said Vick. “It’s all about focus and dedication and commitment, and until you get guys who are willing to better themselves week in and week out, and want to win, you’re not going to win. I just haven’t played with guys like that, and it’s unfortunate for Coach [Reid] that things turned out the way they are and they could have been a lot better, and this locker room could have dictated that.”
Asked if he wanted to return to the Eagles in 2013, Vick responded, “I don’t know.”
He sounded ready to leave Philadelphia behind, just as the team was seemingly ready to part with Vick and his rich contract.
Time helped soothe his frustrations, and the quarterback’s mentality really shifted after talking to Kelly. According to a source close to Vick, the two have had a couple meetings now, and Vick came away very high on the former Oregon coach.
Kelly told reporters down at the Senior Bowl: “I really liked my meeting with Michael.”
None of this guarantees that Vick will be back in an Eagles uniform next season. Kelly needs to not just like Vick, but be convinced that he is the right quarterback to run his offense moving forward. Kelly wants to really study the tape before making a decision. If he comes away certain that Vick is his guy, the next conversation is about the money. Vick is scheduled to make around $16 million next season. There was a report a few weeks back that the signal-caller would be unwilling to restructure his deal. However, that was when the wounds from a trying season were still fresh, and before he got to sit face-to-face with Kelly. It is very possible that tune could change, especially after honest evaluation of his market value.
As has been reported elsewhere, the $3 million guarantee set to kick in on February 6 is really only a factor if no other team pays him that amount this season, meaning that the Eagles have some more time to make their decision. Kelly has not hinted which way he is leaning when it comes to Vick. But we at least know that Vick seems to be on board (money aside) if Kelly calls his number.
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