Some people just never learn.
That seems to be the case for the Philadelphia Eagles who are once again at fault for self-inflicted mistakes after Michael Vick declared the team could potentially form a “dynasty.”
In an interview several days ago with Comcast SportsNet, Vick stated, "When I look at our football team and what we have on paper, I think about when I was growing up and the great San Francisco, Green Bay and Dallas teams, how they just positioned themselves to compete and be one of the best teams out there. I think we have a chance to be that. I think we have a chance to develop a dynasty."
Vick has always been a candid figure who is open about his personal beliefs.
It took a lot of courage for him to reveal his past transgressions as a professional athlete both on and off the field in his recent autobiography Finally Free
Yet, after the suffocating debacle of Vince Young’s “Dream Team” comments last summer, the last thing in the world the Eagles really needed was another ill-advised statement of preseason hype.
Of course, many media publications have taken Vick’s quote out of context as they have quickly compared it to Young’s statement. In defense of Vick, his statement was not an outward assertion of greatness as he stated the Eagles have the talent and potential of being an extremely talented team.
To that degree, Vick is absolutely right in terms of highlighting the strengths of this team.
On offense, if DeSean Jackson returns to form, LeSean McCoy continues to dominate, Jeremy Maclin becomes fully healthy again and Michael Vick avoids getting hurt by staying in the pocket more, the Eagles could punish opposing defenses. With an Eagles defense that greatly improved in the latter half of the season, Philadelphia has the overall pieces to be a legitimate Super Bowl contender next season.
However, Michael Vick should have chosen a better word than “dynasty” when talking about the positives of his team.
A dynasty implies a team that has consistently been a contender for a number of years and has won multiple titles. In baseball, the Yankees are a dynasty. In basketball, the Lakers and the Celtics are dynasties. In the NFL, teams like the old Cowboys and 49ers teams Vick mentioned were dynasties.
The Philadelphia Eagles are not a dynasty.
Seriously, when you’re team hasn’t won any hardware since 1960, seven years before the first Super Bowl even took place, the word “dynasty” doesn’t exactly come to mind. One of the fatal flaws in Vick’s comment is that he compared the potential of an Eagles squad that has never won anything to teams that had some of the greatest runs in NFL history.
Vick will ultimately pay dearly for using the wrong word as the media will use his statement as a symbol similar to the arrogance and cockiness of the “Dream Team” Eagles.
Once again, the “dynasty” label associated with Philadelphia will only act as extra motivation for opposing teams. For a squad that failed to live up to its own lofty expectations last season, they really didn’t need any more statements of superiority.
Ever since Michael Vick became the starter, the Eagles have always had the potential of being a contender. They are explosive and fun to watch as they have playmakers capable of extraordinary feats and hard-hitting defenders that can intimidate opponents.
Vick has been able to get his life back together and redeem his career by playing at a ridiculously high level at times. He certainly got awarded with a lucrative contract despite being in his thirties because of the promise associated with him.
However, ever since the days of Donovan McNabb, the Eagles have always fallen short of the ultimate goal because of one setback after another. Vick’s propensity to utilize his speed outside of the pocket has left him vulnerable to strong open field tackles which will hamper his ribs. Jackson has become erratic as his lack of consistency along with several personal issues with the team has made him a severe liability at times.
Maclin has been beset with a series of debilitating injuries which has limited his potential so far. Throw in a defense that has been surprisingly fickle in big games considering all the assets they have, and the Eagles have to be looked upon as a team that often has something go crucially wrong.
Yet, what’s also concerning is how members of the Eagles like LeSean McCoy haven’t tried to prevent this “dynasty” story from getting any worse. He’s done the exact opposite.
When asked about his thoughts on Vick’s comments, McCoy stated, "I think it's different from calling yourself ‘The Dream Team.' It's saying we have the potential to be a dynasty. I believe Mike. If you look at our team you can see the players stand out and not just the players but Andy Reid speaks for himself with the work he has put in and his resume.
We can be a dynasty, it's just a matter of going out and performing. I think these last two years we should definitely at least have been in the running to get two championships. We have the potential."
While McCoy is right in defending his teammate and trying to disassociate it from the “Dream Team” story, he argues that they once again have the potential to be a dynasty and could have done better.
If McCoy and Vick are trying to make the argument that teams with talented rosters can be considered dynasties even though they haven’t won, then why not call the Chargers, Jets, Falcons and Cowboys potential juggernauts too because they have had the talent to win but just haven’t yet?
Of course, none of those teams have players stating their potential of being a dynasty because they have nothing to back up such ludicrous claims. Even if you’re the most gifted team in the world, it means nothing without any titles to back it up and that’s the problem with the Eagles.
For the second straight summer, a notable player has made an empty statement that can’t be supported and will only put a target on the team.
After seeing the downside of his statement, Vick tried to add more perspective to what his point was by saying, "It's totally different from the Dream Team comment. This is a hypothetical thought. When you think about it in the sense that it's something to aim for -- we can create our own dream team, so nothing against what Vince said, it's just, this is what we can build if we have the right mindset."
Having the right mindset to be successful for future years is nothing worth criticizing. However, Vick should have possessed better judgment before using an exaggerated term like “dynasty” to describe his own team considering how sensitive and unbearable the “Dream Team” quote ended up being.
Vick can talk at nauseam about what he was trying to say but it won’t matter as he can’t take it back. Once he used a term like “dynasty”, the damage was already done as the media will gladly try to replicate the PR nightmare that was the “Dream Team.”