Sometimes having too much fantasy football experience can be detrimental to your success. Take the case of Michael Vick, for instance.
Those playing the game in the early 2000s likely have bad memories of using a very early draft pick on the then-Falcons QB only to see him miss 11 games in '03. Or they remember suffering through Vick's often inconsistent play. Whatever the reason, plenty of fantasy managers were turned off by the idea of ever having the signalcaller on their team again.
So when Vick replaced Kevin Kolb earlier this season in Philly and was named the permanent starter, a number of "old school" owners didn't give a thought to picking him up, figuring it would be more of the same up-and-down production from him. Now, many of fantasy's newcomers are benefiting, as Vick not only has been good, he has been one of the best players in the league.
The most recent of Vick's many explosions came last Thursday against the Texans, when he threw for 302 yards and two TDs and ran for 48 yards and a score. It was the fifth time this season that he had 280-plus yards and multiple TDs passing in a game, and it was also his sixth rushing score of 2010. Not bad for a guy who was out of the league for two full seasons and has been healthy for only seven full games in 2010.
So what has been the difference for Michael Vick, version 2.0? Well, unlike during his six-year stint in Atlanta, this Vick has a completely different mindset, looking to pass first and tucking the ball to run only when nobody is open. He also is giving a consistent effort every time out, something he admitted to not doing as a Falcon. It has resulted in him becoming a fantasy monster, as he now is a dangerous weapon with both his arm and legs.
At the rate he is producing, Vick is going to finish as one of the top handful of fantasy quarterbacks despite missing two full games and parts of others. That's not easy to do, and it shows just how dominant he has been each time he has taken the field. He's also on track to be one of the first QBs taken in 2011 drafts.
So hopefully owners learn a valuable lesson from this: It's never good to hold a fantasy grudge. If you refused to add Vick because he burned you seven years ago, odds are you're kicking yourself now.