Monday was the first day of the rest of Michael Vick's life. (Or lack of one.) He worked the contrition angle. He worked the "got religion" angle.
"Immature?" Please: Bankrolling an illegal-gambling operation and killing dogs is less immature than simply immoral. (Hmm: If he had led off with "I've been immoral," he might have made more headway.)
Here's the lingering question: In an Instant History world, can a multi-year Vick expulsion create enough of a buffer to get him back into the NFL eventually?
"I will redeem myself," he said. We'll see about that. But then he uttered the most honest and realistic analysis of this entire fiasco: "I have to."
Meanwhile, the Falcons played on MNF last night. I didn't watch more than 30 seconds (it happened to be Johnson's TD pass to Henry), but I was struck with a Master Plan for the Falcons:
As long as this is a lost season for the Falcons (sorry: "transition" year) that they might as well write off this season (OK: tank), then put themselves in a position to draft franchise QB Brian Brohm, who happened to have played for Falcons coach Bobby Petrino at Louisville.
Here's the reality: An offensive-minded coach needs a great QB to build the team around (one who already knows the system is just a bonus).
As long as the Falcons aren't going to make the playoffs this year (and they won't), why not put themselves in position to turn it around as soon as possible with a spectacularly talented stud QB perfect for the new coach's offensive system?
Falcons fans (or if you put yourself in the position of Falcons fans): Wouldn't you sacrifice one season now (especially if it's a lost season anyway) for a better chance at a string of great seasons down the road?
More NFL: Lovie Smith isn't happy with Lance Briggs? Well, duh!
Tarvaris Jackson named Vikings starting QB: Guess Kelly Holcomb is just insurance.
MLB Stud: Chase Utley, who returned to the Phillies lineup just in time to go 3/5 (with a HR) and lead his team over the Mets in a near-must-win series.
MLB Dud: Astros manager Phil Garner and GM Tim Purpura, both fired. (Stud: Cecil Cooper, given Garner's job.)
Oh, and Mike Mussina was on the wrong end of a blowout loss to the Tigers (16-0!), calling into question whether he'll be of any value to the Yankees during the last month of the season.
Bonds 756: How much do you think the ball will go for when the auction sale starts today? The over/under is $500,000. I'll say "over."
CFB: If you didn't come around after noon yesterday, I revealed my pick to win the national championship: Virginia Tech.
Speaking of VA Tech, there's this interesting campaign to get Hokies fans to cheer opposing teams, to honor the support that opposing fans showed VA Tech after the shooting. I suspect that fans will welcome a team like
The preview continues today: Heismania. (No, Tim Tebow is not my pick to win the award. Maybe next year. For this year, all you have to do is look to my Heisman pick from last season.)
UPDATE: As you may have noticed, the Heisman list didn't go up. It'll go up tomorrow.
Tennis Gambling Scandal: Paul Goldstein says he was approached about throwing a match. I guarantee you this tennis scandal is so much worse than you can even imagine. Things like this usuall are.
Women's Hoops: Delle Donne is going to UConn.
NBA Moves: The Suns signed second-round pick DJ Strawberry, notable only because Strawberry totally dominated the Vegas Summer League and looked entirely like the steal of the draft.
In Case You Missed It: My latest weekly guest-post for Deadspin on college football.
Fantasy Football: Tonight, I take part in my third draft of the month. Bragging rights are huge: It's the DS.com Commenters league.
Speaking of football prediction games, you only have a few days left to sign up for any of the four leagues (2 NFL, 2 CFB) I have set up. See the links on the right, group name: Daily Quickie Readers.