It’s been over a year since “The Decision.” Thirteen months since Miami’s “Big Three” hit South Beach. Two months since the Heat lost in the NBA Finals. One month since the NFL lockout ended. In other words, it’s time for the media to reprise the dream team motif that paid their bills through the NBA season. NFL free agency, though compressed, has been slow, with one exception.
The Philadelphia Eagles, after dumping Kevin Kolb, have added a group of new faces that apparently makes them a legendary super squad before they even play a preseason game. This is the Wade/James/Bosh storyline retooled for Vick/Asomugha/Jackson. There may be others who belong in the Eagles’ grouping in that last sentence, but I’m not really sure who all those guys were they added. I’m sure Asomugha’s great, but the more I think about it, the less sure I am I knew his name more than a month ago, and I definitely can’t name the team he left to join Philly. (I confessed from the beginning that I don’t own a television, but I did pick the entire NFL regular season last year with better than 92% accuracy.)
That I don’t know these players doesn’t mean they aren’t the best team in the league and the clear favorite to win it all, but it might mean they’ll face a challenge coming out of their division, which includes the Giants and Cowboys.
I’m not even sure the Eagles have the right quarterback to win the Super Bowl. Michael Vick exceeded my expectations last year. After significant time away from the game (to say nothing of a proper training environment), though, Vick had durability and endurance problems down the stretch. Maybe this offseason has been enough to get him back to full playing strength. Even if it has, though, look at this list of Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks. I’m no Steve Sabol, but I don’t see too many mobile QBs on that list, and I’ll spot you Steve Young, who appears once.
Philadelphia’s new backup quarterback may give them the better chance to win a championship. Vince Young is 30-17 as an NFL starter. He can run well, but overall, he plays a more traditional style. He’s had confidence issues, but whatever was going on between him and Jeff Fisher in Nashville is in his past. Andy Reid seems like a pretty supportive coach for his QBs (even if the fan base isn’t). Of course, VY won’t see the field unless Vick loses a limb and can’t stop the bleeding, but if he gets a chance and he succeeds, no one should be surprised.
With even post-lockout free agency, I don’t think the league will again see the likes of the great dynasties of the past (Packers, 49ers, Cowboys), and the Eagles don’t strike me as the type that could make a more modern run like that of the Patriots. I would enjoy seeing Vick lead a dynamic offense to a title, but I think they’d be lucky to share the fate of the Miami Heat, the part for which the media has cast them.