Let me first start by saying that I was vehemently opposed to bringing in Mike Vick. It's not that I think he is a bad player, I actually think that most people will agree, that today he is a better player than Geno, but that isn't really the point. I do not respect Vick as a person, because I think what he did was appalling and unforgivable, but he has paid his dues and served his time and deserves a chance to play in the NFL, but that isn't the point either. The reason I was so strongly against the Vick signing, and the reason Geno needs to win the starting job is simple, to quote John Idzik, we need "sustainable success".
I am not talking about being relevant for a long period of time, I want more than that. I want to glory, I want the Jets' success to last for eternity, I want a Superbowl. Period. That's what should be the goal of every franchise, every executive, every player, and every fan. A Superbowl. I am against Mike Vick starting here because I think it ultimately delays that goal for three reasons: distractions, fleeting success, and delayed development.
Let's start by examining what Mike Vick brings to town. There is no doubting he is a polarizing figure. I think this article is enough proof that there are fans on both sides of the coin. It has been a constant debate since the moment we heard the Jets were interested. And let's not forget the New York Media. I've lived in the tri-state area my entire life and I find it hard to believe that there is a media outlet more prone to controversy and over exaggeration than the New York Media. It doesn't matter who wins the job or when, the media will drag out a "QB Controversy" for the entire season. You think Tebow Sanchez was bad? Imagine if the guy they brought in was actually start-worthy. And let's say Geno does win the job and he starts a couple games and he really struggles out of the gate, what then? The Media will start bringing up the question about whether or not the Jets should turn to Vick, and the fans will start clamoring for him too. The problem with this, is that when you have two guys that could start, everyone will have differing opinions. If the opinions are strong and voiced, it could potentially divide the locker room and we all saw how well that turned out a couple of years ago. That would just stall our ultimate goal, if not worse.
The next reason I was wary of the Vick signing, is fleeting "success". Does anybody think Mike Vick is missing piece to a Superbowl run? Does anybody think with Vick at the helm, we will win the ship in the next 3 years(I'm postulating that we will keep him for 3 years max even though he signed a one year deal)? I certainly don't. I think we are more than a few pieces away from being capable of winning it all. Let's face it, our O-line is getting older and is on the decline. Our secondary is porous and is full of question marks both right now and in regards to the potential of our younger players (here's hoping Milliner is the real deal). We will need to replace Pace and most likely Harris either now or in the coming year/years. Anybody sold on Cumberland being the long term solution at TE? And I like Ivory and Powell, but do you think Ivory can stay on the field and Powell will continue to improve? I understand that these things can be addressed in the draft and in free agency, but young players take time to develop and it will most likely take more than a couple of years for them to realize their potential. So what does Vick do for us? He makes us better today. But is that good? I mean don't get me wrong I don't want to suck and I hate to lose, but what does a 9-7 or 10-6 record do for us? We'll make the playoffs sure, but do you think we'll make the magical run to the Superbowl? I honestly just don't see us being anything more than a wild card team. The problem is that I think it will give us the mentality that we are better than we are and not have the urgency to improve, circa 2010. Even if that's not the case, it leads me to my final concern, fleeting success could cause a lack of development at the position most needed to win a Superbowl: Quarterback.
Vick starting at QB creates more problems than just the illusion of success and media nightmare, he slows the Jets ability to develop a future QB. Everyone was spoiled by the success of Andrew Luck and Russel Wilson and believe that every team should be able to find a QB who can come in and immediately be able to carry their team. Unfortunately, that is extremely rare and the Jets never get that lucky. Most successful QB's need time to develop before they're successful. Case in point Eli, Peyton, Brees, Brady, Rodgers and the majority of the other successful QB's in the league. Yes, Geno had an up and down year last year. He had moments where you just say "What the f*ck were you looking at?" But he also had moments where he made linebackers look silly with juke moves and showed off a laser arm that Sanchez certainly never had. I know there are questions about his accuracy, but I saw throws put in the perfect spot, so I know he has the ability. Honestly, I haven't made up my mind on Geno yet. He made a lot of poor decisions out there last year. But I am of the mindset that you need time to learn from your mistakes (and one yearly hardly counts as enough time) and you need viable weapons to take the pressure off of a young qb. Now that aside, starting Vick this year would be crushing to his development. He wouldn't have the opportunity to learn from his mistakes. Some will say that riding pine will be good for him, Hey look at A-A-ron Rodgers. The difference is when Rodgers was drafted, there was no doubt he would be there to study until his time came. Geno has started for us since day one, and relegating him to the bench at this point would be more of a confidence killer than anything else. So where does that put our QB situation now? Starting Vick would mean we would need to go in a different direction long term at QB. If that's the case, playing the odds that it takes 3 years to develop a starting caliber QB, we either need to draft our future QB in May or do it in 2015 and we might be able to compete by 2018 at the earliest if we're lucky. I just don't think its the right move. If Geno wins the job and starts from day 1, we will know (hopefully definitively) if he has what it takes. If he does, we are looking at possibly next year or the year after at actually being consistently competitive. If he doesn't improve, then we draft a QB in 2015 and proceed from there, but at least we'll know for sure. In my opinion Vick is only a stopgap, maybe 3 years at the most if he holds up. But in the end he wont be enough to compete for the ultimate goal and might actually delay our chance to attain it.
I think best case scenario: Geno wins the job out right, plays well and improves over the course of the year, Jets hoist the Lombardi in 2017.
That's just my opinion and I know its a polarizing topic, but what do you guys think?