Emmitt Smith and Michael Vick

He’s the biggest fish in the whole doggone pond right now, so they’re putting the squeeze on him [Vick] to get to everyone else. Now, granted he might have been to a dogfight a time or two, maybe five times, maybe 20 times, may have bet some money, but he’s not the one you’re after. He’s just the one who’s going to take the fall — publicly.”
— All-time NFL rushing leader Emmitt Smith, speaking Saturday at his enshrinement in the College Football Hall of Fame.

I know exactly what Smith was trying to say.  He’s trying to make the same comparison to arresting Vick as arresting the drug dealer on the corner….why not go after the big players?  Emmitt knows Vick is the “big name” but not the “big player” in all of this.  I don’t think this point came across very well…for instance Peter King lays into him.

It sounds very much like Smith empathizes with Vick’s plight and doesn’t find it very objectionable that Vick might have put a few bucks down on dogfights. Is he serious? Is there anything justifiable about Vick going to a single dogfight, or gambling a dime on a dogfight?

Emmitt isn’t trying to justify anything…he’s just saying don’t miss the big picture.  If you really care about putting an end to dog fighting then you shouldn’t be focusing on Vick as the end game.  There’s bigger players out there and just getting a “name” isn’t going to accomplish a whole lot.  In some ways, it is just going to let the bigger players stay in the shadows because the push to go after these guys will subside.


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