The six-year, $100 million contract that never really was a six-year, $100 million contract will ultimately be not even a three-year deal.
With Eagles quarterback Mike Vick due to earn a base salary of $15.5 million in 2013 and with $3 million of it due to become fully guaranteed only days after Super Bowl XLVII, the Eagles have a decision to make, quickly.
As we reported five days ago on NBC’s Football Night in America, Vick won’t renegotiate the deal. As a result, this limits the Eagles’ options, significantly.
Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer echoes the notion that Vick won’t reduce his 2013 pay, and then McLane lays out the theoretical options. The Eagles could cut Vick before the $3 million becomes fully guaranteed. Or they could keep him into the new league year, carrying the guarantee and the cap number while attempting to trade him. Finally, the Eagles could squat on Vick through offseason workouts and into training camp and the preseason as insurance against an injury to Nick Foles, since the rest of Vick’s salary would not become fully guaranteed until the first day of the regular season.
But no option other than cutting Vick is particularly viable. A torn ACL or a ruptured Achilles or any other significant injury to Vick while participating in training camp, the preseason, offseason practice, or even weightlifting at the team’s facility would potentially put the Eagles on the hook for the full $15.5 million. And with Vick unwilling to take less money, no one will trade for Vick’s contract.
Besides, as the Eagles move forward, presumably with a new coach, they can’t afford the distraction that would come from keeping Vick. So while the Eagles have options, the only option that makes sense is cutting Vick loose before that $3 million guaranteed vests in early February.
“I have to just sit back and think about what has transpired and look at the situation as a whole,” Vick said Friday regarding his future, per McLane. “Of course, you would like to come back and play. I love the organization and I love what they’ve done for me. . . . But if not, it’s been wonderful and I understand the nature of this business. At some point, we all got to move on.”
Amen to that. And Vick most likely will be moving on, and moving out, sooner rather than later.