Will Michael Vick
take the Atlanta Falcons down with him?
On Tuesday Michael Vick
was indicted along with three others in a dogfighting ring
federal case. So what's the NFL and the Atlanta Falcons to do?
A lot of rumors surround the indictment of Michael Vick for his
alleged participation in the dogfighting ring operating under
the name "Bad Newz Kennels". We have followed this story since
it broke more than a month ago, and you can read the facts and
details by following the links at the bottom of the page.
Advertisement: Odds on the Atlanta Falcons
But most of you already know what's
going on with Vick and the alleged pitbull fighting ring. As far
as Michael Vick is concerned, and event the Atlanta Falcons and
the NFL, the image of the quarterback has already been stained.
Even if he was found not guilty for participation, the fact that
the investigators dug out over 50 graves of dogs involved in the
illegal fights in his own property, is enough to make people
wonder. Unless you run a pet cemetery, there is no good
explanation of turning your backyard into a dog-camp-of-death.
You can try and flip the facts into a
racial issue, celebrity issue, sports-figure issue, but at the
end 50+ dead dogs on your property will still be 50+ dead dogs
on your property. So Michael Vick is pretty much done. The
damage on his image is done, and neither the media, nor the
authorities will let us forget about it for at least a season.
But don't blame anyone, but Vick - a responsible home owner does
not have fifty pits buried in his backyard.
Where does this leave the NFL?
Commissioner Roger Goodell came out with the following statement
today, regarding the indictment of Michael Vick: "Michael
Vick's guilt has not yet been proven, and we believe that all
concerned should allow the legal process to determine the
Which makes sense, you can't suspend NFL
players every time they have a brush with the law. Not because
they are better than the regular 9-to-5 folks, but because it
will leave the NFL teams with 2-3 people. Take for example the
Miami Dolphins - a few days ago
Chris Chambers became the third player to
be arrested this off-season. Or just pick through the
criminal section - I am sure you will find a representative of
your local NFL team arrested for something - strip club
shooting, a brawl, DUI, whatever. Even the old school players
are "doing it" -
Bill Maas was just recently handcuffed
on drug and gun charges.
Unfortunately, NFL has turned into a
hip-hop record label - the more a rapper gets shot (or shoots
someone, as in the recent Remy Ma case), the more albums will be
sold. The more times Pacman Jones gets arrested, the more
jerseys he'll sell. Well, we might be a little prejudice, as the
NFL is one of the leading opponents of sports betting and
gambling, but it makes no sense complaining that Mr. Average Joe
is betting $50 on the Falcons, while the quarterback's property
was "designed" by Stephen King. Yet Mr. Average Joe is guilty of
tampering with the integrity of the sport, but there is no guilt
for the latter.
I personally own 3 jerseys of Michael
Vick (currently in the closed, pending investigation). And I am
a big Atlanta Falcons fan. But this would not stop me from
asking Michael Vick to take some responsibility, as I am also a
grown man. And Vick should man-up and do what every innocent
rich person would - sell his Virginia property and donate all
the money to the Humane Society or to another charitable
organization focusing on preventing illegal dog fights. Trust
me, giving away a million or two in order to clear your name is
nothing compared to the years of being labeled as a "dogfight
promoter". And if he is found guilty, well, I wouldn't bet on
the Atlanta Falcons for a while.
Published on 07/18/2007