Questions Surround Marcus Vick

Marcus Vick
Marcus Vick was dismissed from Virginia Tech's football team Jan. 6 for what the school said was a "cumulative effect of legal infractions and unsportsmanlike play." (Michael Conroy - AP)
By Mark Schlabach
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, April 28, 2006

With Marcus Vick's legal problems and troubled college career in the rearview mirror, his agent says he anticipates the former Virginia Tech quarterback being selected at some point in this weekend's NFL draft. But Lawrence Woodward, a longtime friend of the Vick family, won't say which teams have shown interest in the younger brother of Atlanta Falcons star Michael Vick.

Marcus Vick, 22, was dismissed from Virginia Tech's football team Jan. 6 for what the school said was a "cumulative effect of legal infractions and unsportsmanlike play." He started all 13 games as a junior and was named all-ACC after leading the Hokies to the conference championship game in his first full season.

But Vick stomped the leg of Louisville defensive end Elvis Dumervil during the Gator Bowl and then was kicked off the team when it was learned he had been charged in a Dec. 17 traffic stop. Three days after he was dismissed from the team, Vick turned himself in to police in Suffolk, Va., for allegedly pulling a handgun on three teenagers in the parking lot of a fast-food restaurant.

"Marcus is a really good kid," Woodward said. "He's done some immature things. But I believe Marcus is very smart and has a good heart and wishes to do the right things. He hasn't always in the past acted with the maturity of a 30-year-old when he was 19. But I truly believe whatever team selects him will be thanking their lucky stars a year from now. I think the teams that don't select him will regret it."

Most NFL teams haven't shown much interest in Vick. He worked out at the NFL combine in Indianapolis and during Virginia Tech's Pro Day last month in Blacksburg, Va. But the quarterback wasn't invited for private workouts by any NFL team, although a few have asked Woodward for Vick's contact information in case he's selected this weekend.

"It's been pretty good," Woodward said of NFL teams' interest in Vick. "I've been pleasantly surprised with the response we've gotten. I think Marcus did really well at the combine and he's been working out in Atlanta for several months. I expect Marcus will get drafted and will do fine."

Vick, 6 feet and 216 pounds, didn't respond to numerous requests to be interviewed for this story.

Two scouts for NFL teams that might draft a quarterback this weekend said Vick wasn't among their respective team's top 10 quarterback prospects. They cited his past legal problems and felt he needed one more season at Virginia Tech to mature as a passer. Vick's prospects also were hurt when he reportedly scored 11 on the Wonderlic, an intelligence test used by NFL teams. The average score by an NFL quarterback on the 12-minute, 50-question test is 24, according to Paul Zimmerman's book, "The New Thinking Man's Guide to Pro Football."

"There's too much of a risk," said one NFL scout, who requested anonymity because he said there is a small chance his team could still select Vick. "He's a fabulous athlete and could probably grow into being a good quarterback in the NFL, but the risks just outweigh everything else. You just don't know if he's going to do something else stupid or not."

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