Conversation commenced around this time last year that Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick could become the No. 1 overall fantasy pick—not only the first quarterback taken, but the first player of any position.
While I wasn’t sold, I expected big things for the former first overall pick in the 2002 NFL Draft out of Virginia Tech coming off his ground-breaking 201o campaign, in which he set career-bests for most completions (231), passing yards (3,018), passing touchdowns (21), rushing touchdowns (nine) and his highest completion percentage (62.6) in just 12 games (all starts).
I’m lukewarm again on the 6-0, 215-pound elusive signal-caller this year, as evidenced by my early fantasy football 2012 quarterback rankings. There’s no question he can put huge numbers on display using his arm and feet, but staying healthy is my primary concern.
Vick hasn’t played a full schedule since 2006.
He had his moments last season, as he exceeded his career-passing mark with 3,303 yards.
He also added 589 yards on the ground, third-most amongst quarterbacks in 2011 only behind Tim Tebow (660) and Cam Newton (706). The problem came in the form of turnovers.
His 21 touchdowns to six picks ratio from 2010 took a dive to 18 TDs to 14 INTs. Each of those 14 interceptions—which was a career-high—ate into his fantasy value. He also lost two fumbles of seven fumbles.
In addition, Vick failed to find the end zone on his feet.
The Newport News, VA native managed just one rushing score all year after establishing a career-record nine rushing TDs in 2010.
Moreover, most leagues award six points for a rushing touchdown and four points for a passing TD, so he really missed out on what made his 2010 campaign so special for fantasy owners.
While I’m slightly hesitate on Vick, he gets more love elsewhere.
His Mock Draft Central ADP is 50, which ranks sixth among QBs.
Clearly he has the ability to be a top-three fantasy QB if he can stay healthy and continues to improve his passing game and performs like he should on his feet.
He’s showing more dedication that years past, and former Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski said on ESPN that Vick could have the best year of his career in 2012.
Time will tell, but if you’re the gambling type, Vick is that high-risk/high-reward player.