The Eagles signed Mike Vick on August 13. The next day, owner Jeffrey Lurie made it clear that Vick would need to be proactive in his off-field efforts to make amends for his history of dogfighting and animal cruelty.
Now, nearly four weeks later, the process of proaction will commence.
The Eagles have announced that Vick will be speaking today to the incoming freshman class, roughly 200 in size, at Nueva Esperanza Academy, a Philadelphia charter school.
Vick is slated to “share his story” with the students.
Also on the agenda is Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society, which remains to date the only prominent animal-rights group to get behind the Mike Vick redemption process.
The announcement comes amid a report from the Philadelphia Inquirer that the team circulated on Monday a draft plan to local animal-rights groups that “calls for an immediate, widespread campaign to combat animal abuse” in the city.
The proposed plan, however, didn’t mention Vick.
The previously unannounced school appearance, coming a day after circulation of the proposed plan, probably is aimed at helping persuade the local animal-rights groups to endorse and support the plan.
That said, it seems that there’s way too much planning and managing and handling going on here, and not enough real, genuine action from Vick.
So why are the Eagles carrying the cross for a guy who presumably will be a part-time player at best for at most one season?
The extent to which the Eagles have rolled up their sleeves on this one further confirms our suspicion that the primary motivation for signing Vick was to determine via the 2009 season whether he can become the team’s starting quarterback for 2010 and beyond. If the goal was anything less than that, the Eagles simply wouldn’t be devoting so much time and attention to helping Vick gain acceptance locally.