I posted with the headline, Will Michael Vick Get The Real 60 Minutes Treatment? Not 5 minutes later:
Quarterback Michael Vick has signed a two-year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles, his agent, Joel Segal, confirmed to ESPN.com. Vick arrived in Philadelphia Tuesday morning and remained there Wednesday evening. The Eagles will hold a news conference on Friday morning to announce his signing. The first year of the deal is for $1.6 million deal with an option for the second year at $5.2 million, FoxSports.com reports.
An animal lover not much interested in sports, you might think I’d be itching to pile on with criticism of Michael Vick. But he has done his time and paid for his crime. He’s also handled himself skillfully (or has hired some skillful handlers) since.
It got noticed last weekend when he spent some time at a Humane Society function in Atlanta, speaking to about 50 people, including young men thought likely to engage in dogfighting:
Not a big deal, until you consider his hometown of Newport News, Va., planned a “celebration” for the unemployed ex-con. It would have been an ego boost to someone who surely needs it, but Vick’s appearance with the Humane Society forced the event’s postponement. Good call by Vick, who has committed to similar twice-monthly appearances for a year, according to the society.
A savvy association. And, it turns out, he had another: a 60 Minutes camera crew in tow. With that we know where Vick’s nationwide apology will be delivered. But TV Squad suspects a gift to Vick:
Normally, I have a lot of faith in 60 Minutes being a crucible of truth. The interviewers play hard ball. However, instead of Mike Wallace or Morley Safer or Scott Pelley doing the interview, a ringer is being brought in. James Brown, the CBS Sports anchor of NFL Today — the Sunday pre-game hour — will be a special 60 Minutes interviewer. That sounds to me like a gift to Vick. Hopefully, Brown will be tough and fair and ask the pertinent questions without quarter. I’m watching to see if Michael Vick gets the real 60 Minutes treatment, or if James Brown plays nice.
CBS says there were no conditions on the Vick interview. They also say that James Brown earned the right to do the Vick piece by getting the interview on his own.
Meanwhile, Richard Cohen did a sympathetic piece on Tuesday:
With team after team turning him down, the question regarding Michael Vick, thrower of footballs and killer of dogs, is not whether he will return to the NFL or even whether he should return, but whether he would be back already if he were just a wee bit younger and could still thread a needle with the football. The answer, boys and girls, is yes. An excuse would have been found.
In other Vick news, the WaPo declined to run this week’s “Tank McNamara” storyline, which had Dick Cheney advising the NFL to kill Michael Vick. Readers got “Tank” reruns instead. Comic Riffs said the problem was its satiric point wasn’t sharp enough. You can see for yourself.
And I can’t say I know what happened in Vick’s bankruptcy proceedings. What piqued my interest instead was those ‘excessive’ legal bills:
Vick’s lead bankruptcy lawyers from Crowell & Moring had asked the court to approve more than $2.6 million in fees and expenses for 7,200 billable hours of work over ten months. “I don’t understand how that happens,” U.S. bankruptcy judge Frank Santoro said at the hearing, according to The Associated Press. (The billable time would equate to working 24 hours a day on the Vick case for 300 straight days.)
Among the items included in the Crowell fee request is the cost of running an air conditioner on a weekend. Court filings show that Crowell has agreed to reduce its request to a paltry $1.7 million.