This one, penned by Yahoo! movie blogger Will Leitch, drops tomorrow at 7 a.m. so the mag has started to send out embargoed teases to other media outlets to get the buzziest buzz going on this thing but, shit, why wait 12 hours for the good stuff? You'll read it all tomorrow on GQ's website, right? Promise? Good. So let's trot out the semi-controversial quotes from Mike Vick guaranteed to get another dog-related headline pulsating across America's newswires tomorrow.(PHOTO: Deviantart)
...Vick on how the only people that still seem to care about the dog-fighting are reporters:
"They are writing as if everyone feels that way and has the same opinions they do. But when I go out in public, it's all positive, so that's obviously not true." The media, Vick implies, still act as though he used to sneak into suburban yards, steal golden retrievers, and set them on fire. As if he were a lone actor, a single rampaging menace, a canine serial killer with no context, motivation, or backstory. As if he is the only person in America associated with dogfighting.
...on people not understanding where he comes from:
"Yeah, you got the family dog and the white picket fence, and you just think that's all there is. Some of us had to grow up in poverty-stricken urban neighborhoods, and we just had to adapt to our environment. I know that it's wrong. But people act like it's some crazy thing they never heard of. They don't know."
I ask Vick if he feels that white people simply don't understand that aspect of black culture. "I think that's accurate," he says. "I mean, I was just one of the ones who got exposed, and because of the position I was in, where I was in my life, it went mainstream. A lot of people got out of it after my situation, not because I went to prison but because it was sad for them to see me go through something that was so pointless, that could have been avoided."
"One day in prison is too long," he says.
Yes, but I mean for this particular crime.
He sighs. I'm not the first person who's tried to lead him down this road. "For a while, it was all ‘Scold Mike Vick, scold Mike Vick, just talk bad about him, like he's not a person,' " he says. "It's almost as if everyone wanted to hate me. But what have I done to anybody? It was something that happened, and it was people trying to make some money."
"But it's not fair. It's not fair to the animal. I know what to do now. I am strong as an individual, and I can handle anything."
"I miss dogs, man," he says. "I always had a family pet, always had a dog growing up. It was almost equivalent to the prison sentence, having something taken away from me for three years. I want a dog just for the sake of my kids, but also me. I miss my companions."
Those are great and everything but here's the one that really sticks out to me:
Michael Vick on not originally wanting to come to Philly:
"I think I can say this now, because it's not going to hurt anybody's feelings, and it's the truth... I didn't want to come to Philadelphia. Being the third-team quarterback is nothing to smile about. Cincinnati and Buffalo were better options."
Those two teams wanted him and would've allowed him to start, but after meeting with commissioner Roger Goodell and other reps from the NFL, Vick was convinced—and granted league approval—to sign with Philly. "And I commend and thank them, because they put me in the right situation."
So can we presume that Michael Vick was forbidden from signing with Cincy or Buffalo for big-time starter money two seasons ago because Goodell and other NFL parole officers thought he should serve more probation as a third-stringer on the Eagles instead? Because I'd be irked by that if I were a fan of either one of those teams if that were the case.
Thankfully, I'm not, and instead get to enjoy another season of watching The Best Football Player In The Universe Ever do his fancy wiggle-and-chuck routine for 900 yards and 17 touchdowns per game. That is until his knee gets demolished in Week 3. Then we'll have to replay this redemption song again next year when Vince Young is featured in GQ's pigskin issue after his remarkable comeback season with the Eagles gives him a second chance to be a Super Bowl-winning black Hall of Fame quarterback.