Michael Vick has clarified statements attributed to him in an article published by Gentleman's Quarterly magazine that said he was persuaded by NFL officials to join the Philadelphia Eagles instead of other teams after being released from prison before the 2009 season.
"I think I can say this now, because it's not going to hurt anybody's feelings, and it's the truth," Vick told the magazine. "I didn't want to come to Philadelphia. Being the third-team quarterback is nothing to smile about. Cincinnati and Buffalo were better options."
The magazine article said Vick met with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and other league officials, who convinced him to sign with Philadelphia.
"And I commend and thank them, because they put me in the right situation," Vick said in the article.
On Thursday, Vick said he did speak with numerous people about where to sign, but that the decision to join the Eagles was all his.
"I felt it was necessary to put out a statement today clarifying the article in GQ magazine," Vick stated. "I did speak with many people, but the decision to sign in Philadelphia was based on my discussions with my agent, my family and with Coach Reid. And after those discussions, it became clear to me that this was the place I wanted to play and resume my NFL career.
"The commissioner never told me to sign or not sign with particular teams. Again, I want to make it perfectly clear that this was a decision I made and, as I have said numerous times before, I'm very happy with the way it has worked out for me and my family."
Vick, who spent 19 months in prison after pleading guilty to federal charges stemming from a dogfighting operation, began his Eagle career in 2009 as the third-string quarterback. He started the 2010 campaign as the backup to Kolb after McNabb was traded, but quickly ascended to the starter's role after the first game of the season.