Michael Vick: Player, Not Mentor

Michael Heiman

We have had some interesting discussion on the thought process the Jets had when they signed Michael Vick. I have seen some smart people suggest Vick's primary role will be to serve as a mentor to Geno Smith. There probably is something to that. I am sure the Jets hope Vick will try to teach Geno some of the finer points of the offense he ran productively in Philadelphia.

Just don't get too caught up in this stuff. The real reason the Jets brought Vick in is to help the team win games. Vick is probably not the player he was during his prime, but there is a strong case to make that he will be the best quarterback the team has had since Brett Favre in 2008. He is probably better than 2009-2012 Mark Sanchez and 2013 Geno Smith. Will he be better than 2014 Geno Smith? We do not know yet, but if Geno does not make a big leap, the Jets can now turn to Vick to win games.

I think the mentor stuff gets overplayed. It's nice for a young player to have a peer to learn from, but most instruction comes from coaching. $4 million and a roster spot are too valuable to waste on somebody just to be an instructor. The Jets think Vick can help the team as a player. That might be as a starter. It might be as a backup in case Geno gets hurt or goes through a November type swoon again. This is the real reason he is around.

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