After an arbitrator ruled disgraced quarterback Michael Vick must pay back $20 million in bonuses to the Atlanta Falcons, the NFLPA appealed the ruling. The Players’ Association typically takes the side of their members, even when obviously wrong, because they are more concerned about keeping the players in line and paying dues than in hypothetical concepts like, “justice.” The money Vick was ordered to repay reflects money he received for future years of service he cannot render, due to his own misconduct. ESPN has the Associated Press report:
The Falcons argued that Vick, who pleaded guilty to federal charges for his role in the long-running operation, knew he was in violation of the contract when he signed a 10-year, $130 million deal in December 2004.
The team said he used proceeds from the contract to fund his illicit activities and sought the repayment of $19,970,000 in bonuses he was paid over the last three years.
Any money the Falcons recover from Vick would be credited to its future salary cap, a huge step in recovering from the loss of the team’s franchise player. Atlanta (1-4) is off to a dismal start with Joey Harrington at quarterback.
“We are certainly pleased with today’s ruling,” the Falcons said in a statement. “It is the first step in a process that our club has undertaken in an attempt to recoup significant salary cap space that will allow us to continue to build our football team today and in future years.”
In a highly technical, nine-page ruling, Burbank said the Falcons were entitled to $3.75 million of the $7.5 million bonus that Vick was paid after signing the deal in 2004, $13.5 million of the $22.5 million in roster, reporting and playing bonuses he was paid in 2005 and 2006, and $2.72 million of the $7 million roster, reporting and playing bonus that he received this year.
Read the whole story at the link above. This isn’t as if Vick were the victim of some accident. He created the situation which led to his own downfall – and knew he was violating the terms of the contract when he signed it and took the money. So, in addition to being a torturer of animals and a funder of illegal gambling, he is also a thief, a fraud, and a liar – but the sort who deals in millions.
Thanks to reader “Peter F.” for bringing this to our attention.