Michael Vick Might Have Followed His Coaching Dreams if Not for Former All-Pro WR Cris Carter

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Michael Vick might have followed his coaching dreams if not for Cris Carter, who convinced him to quit football and enter the NFL as a wide receiver in order to get away from all-out dog fighting.

Cris Carter is a former wide receiver who played for the Philadelphia Eagles, Minnesota Vikings and Miami Dolphins. In 1995, he was named to the Pro Bowl and All-Pro team. He also won Super Bowl XXIX with the San Diego Chargers in 1994. Michael Vick might have followed his coaching dreams if not for Cris Carter.

Highlights of the article:

  • Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick has shown interest in joining Andy Reid’s coaching staff.
  • Vick was a member of Reid’s Philadelphia Eagles coaching staff from 2009 until 2012 before temporarily rejoined his staff in 2017.
  • Cris Carter, the legendary Minnesota Vikings receiver, persuaded Vick to choose a different route.

Former Atlanta Falcons star quarterback Michael Vick being the next great offensive-minded head coach is unlikely to spring to mind when we think of NFL parallel worlds and what-ifs. You may not even be aware that the four-time Pro Bowl pick pondered a coaching career.

Yes, there was a moment when Vick, who played 14 seasons in the NFL and inspired a generation of quarterbacks, really considered retiring from the game. If you’re interested in learning more about what may have been, contact Minnesota Vikings icon Cris Carter.

Michael Vick worked as a coaching intern with the Chiefs in 2017.

In retrospect, the Kansas City Chiefs’ most crucial quarterback move in 2017 was choosing Texas Tech quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Coach Andy Reid of the Kansas City Chiefs made another, easily forgotten, quarterback-related move that summer when he hired Vick as a coaching intern.

Vick, who retired after spending the 2015 season with the Pittsburgh Steelers, was dressed in a bright red Chiefs jersey and cap as training camp started. The Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship, which allows former players to spend a preseason studying alongside a team’s coaching staff, provided the opportunity to the Madden NFL 2004 cover athlete.

Vick “connected” with Mahomes and Alex Smith, who was then in his last season as the Chiefs’ starting quarterback, over the summer, according to The Washington Post. Things changed, however, when Carter, a co-host of FS1’s First Things First, phoned Vick and asked if he wanted to be an NFL analyst on the program. 

After chatting with Reid, the former quarterback decided to put his coaching career on hold and join the network. Vick was also introduced to veteran NFL broadcasters Chris Berman and John Madden, with whom he exchanged ideas and criticism.

After following Carter to FS1, Vick never looked back (except once).

Vick has steadily ascended the broadcasting ladder since joining Fox, and he is a regular on Fox NFL Kickoff, a spin-off of the network’s iconic Fox NFL Sunday pregame program. Vick had not left Fox for any other NFL club as of the time of publishing.

Vick did, however, consider coaching professional football at one time. Vick was appointed as the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Legends of the Alliance of American Football in April 2018. Vick was supposed to serve that position under Brad Childress, who worked with him briefly with the Chiefs in 2017.

Neither of these concepts came to completion. Childress left the team a month before the season began. Vick abruptly stepped down as coordinator on the day of the AAF’s debut kickoff in February 2019 and transferred to an administrative job.

Unfortunately for Vick, the AAF folded two weeks before the regular season was set to finish in April 2019.

Vick had the potential to be the next great offensive mind to emerge from Reid’s coaching tree.

Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson (L) and Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid in 2017.

Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson (L) and Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid in 2017. Andy Reid’s coaching tree includes former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson (L) | Jamie Squire/Getty Images

On the one hand, Vick is still just 41 years old and has plenty of time to think about teaching if he wants to. On the other hand, he’s at ease in the broadcast booth and told The Washington Post that he values the amount of time he gets to spend with his family.

But we can only speculate on what would have transpired if Vick had continued in coaching in 2017. No one is predicting that he’ll be a position coach, much alone a head coach, at this point in his career, but he’d be 41 and on his way up the coaching ladder.

Over the previous two decades, Reid has promoted a slew of offensive-minded assistants to head coaching positions. Childress was the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings for five seasons, leading them to NFC North crowns in 2008 and 2009. Pat Shurmur, Reid’s former quarterbacks coach in Philadelphia, has failed as a head coach but has been a part of some of the best offenses in the league as a coordinator.

Doug Pederson won a Super Bowl ring with the Eagles in February 2018, and the team has made the playoffs three times in the last five years. We’re not going to celebrate Matt Nagy’s offensive brilliance just because he’s the head coach of the Chicago Bears. On that, you can rely on us.

In an age of senseless hot takes, we did have Vick as a sensible analyst. Regardless, football enthusiasts seem to have triumphed.

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RELATED: Michael Vick Blames a Lack of Maturity and Desire for the Atlanta Falcons’ Failure to Win More Games

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Michael Vick might have followed his coaching dreams if not for former all-pro WR Cris Carter. Carter has been the target of many jokes over the years, but he helped Michael Vick get into the NFL and eventually become a star QB. Reference: when did michael vick retire.

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