Michael Vick responds to ESPN report

Elsa

Earlier today, ESPN's Ed Werder aired a report in which "sources" claimed that Michael Vick felt the Eagles were "playing politics" with his injury so that they could get more time to look at Nick Foles.

Vick released the following statement in response.

"I want to thank my fans for the thousands of well wishes. I also appreciate the support of the entire Eagles organization. I feel strong and healthy. As a professional athlete, I want to play in every game but the NFL has a specific protocol to protect players. My focus is to complete this process successfully, so I can rejoin my team on the field."

Andy Reid directly refuted the report when asked.

I've talked with Michael and Michael is good," he said. "I don't know where things get started but Michael is fine with it. He understands that everything is in the best interest of him right now and making sure that he's ready to go."

There's two separate things at work here, whether Michael Vick might feel this way and whether it might actually be true. The latter conspiracy seems pretty absurd given how seriously the NFL treats concussions these days. To claim that the Eagles would somehow be faking IMPACT tests is an incredibly serious charge. Not only would that bring on a Saints level (probably worse) punishment from the NFL, the medical professionals administering the test would be in serious violation of medical ethics rules as well.

Eagles trainer Rick Burkholder brushed off the idea of a conspiracy as well.

"There's no conspiracy here. We don't grade the ImPACT test, which he has not gotten back to baseline [on]. I send that paper from the computer off to the people in Pittsburgh. They come back and say he has not passed baseline. That's an NFL rule. That has nothing to with anything with us. He's got to pass that before we can ever entertain the fact of him playing. So, I don't know where that came from. There's no conspiracy theory. As the gatekeeper of these guys, he's not going to play until he gets past baseline and gets through the five phases. He's in phase four, hasn't passed the baseline, hasn't seen the independent [neurologist] yet."

The idea that the Eagles coaches, their trainers, teams of independent doctors in Pittsburgh & Philadelphia would be working together to willfully lie about about the results of a guy's concussion tests just so they could give themselves a convenient excuse to play Nick Foles is about the stupidest thing I've heard all year.

Now, as to whether Vick or someone near him might float such a theory out of frustration? That's possible. It could certainly be that Vick feels fine and doesn't notice any symptoms, but just keeps hearing that he can't pass this baseline test. Fact is, that's why the test was developed... And if Vick's hangers on actually care about him, that's what they'll be telling him, not floating some absurd conspiracy theories.

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