Two years and three days after he was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges arising from a six-year pattern of interstate gambling and dogfighting, quarterback Mike Vick is a free man.
Per the Associated Press, Vick has been released from federal custody upon completion of two months of house arrest, which followed 19 months in a Kansas prison.
Sure, he’s on probation for a few years, and if he gets in trouble he could make a return visit to Leavenworth. And we were reminded last week of what will happen if he ever gets his hands on a gun. But there currently are no restrictions on his movement.
So what’s next? He’ll surely ask for reinstatement soon (ESPN’s Chris Mortensen predicts a formal request with 24 to 48 hours), and we’ll possibly hear from Vick before too long, via a televised interview.
Our guess is that the first person to get a crack at Vick will be someone who has supported him throughout his ordeal — possibly even someone who continued to blindly defend Vick as the evidence of his guilty continued to mount.
In our view, that won’t be the best approach. If Vick grants any interviews before his reinstatement meeting with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (something we don’t think Vick should do), Vick needs to begin to project remorse and contrition. The last thing he needs is a well-intentioned cheerleader lobbing softballs like, “Haven’t you been punished enough?”
So we think that, if Vick chooses to take to the media before he talks to the Commish, he should pick someone who’ll ask him the same kind of questions that Goodell will be posing to him, and not someone who’ll transform the session into a Mike Vick infomercial.
Hey, maybe the ShamWow guy would do it.