There is a contingent of Jets fans and football fans in general who do notVick is proving to be a point of controversy early in his Jets tenure.
want Michael Vick on the football field. Vick, previously convicted in a federal dogfighting conspiracy investigation, is the subject of a petition at SUNY Cortland. Since 2009, Cortland has been the offseason home of the Jets. This year a petition with around 1500 signatures states that Michael Vick is not welcome to join the team at camp.
The petition which was submitted to the president of SUNY Cortland was very strongly worded, calling Vick a "monster and a disgrace". It elaborates by stating that "If we welcome Vick onto our campus, we are complicit in his crimes". A picture of a mauled dog accompanied the petition.
It was inevitable that there would be some of this type of reaction when the Jets brough Vick into the fold. Although he served his time, the brutal nature of dogfighting elicits a strong response from fans and society in general. A large market like New York only serves to magnify the attention of individuals and groups who believe that Vick's punishment was not as severe as his crime warranted.
There had already been some negative attention on the Jets as PETA and celebrities including ESPN's Michelle Beadle panned the signing of Vick. It seems likely that this type of protest will continue for as long as Vick remains in the NFL. So far, his return has brought mixed results on the field. He was electric in 2010 and 2011 before two disappointing and injury riddled seasons in '12 and '13.
The Jets are used to dealing with sideshows when it comes to quarterbacks. Mark Sanchez was panned for his participation in New York nightlife and his infamous GQ appearance. Tim Tebow got tremendous media attention just by being himself, despite the fact that he barely made it onto the field as a Jet. It is yet to be seen if anything more will come of the petition in Cortland, but Vick and the Jets will have to prepare themselves for more backlash from animal lovers.