Vick gets cheers from Philly fans

The Associated PressAugust 28, 2009 

— All eyes were on Michael Vick -- for all of six plays.

Playing his first NFL game since his release from prison, the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback got a standing ovation, avoided any ugly protests and completed four passes for 19 yards.

Though his minutes were limited Thursday night, Vick was ready to take on any assignment. He played quarterback, ran the wildcat formation, even lined up at wide receiver and completed a pass right-handed.

The Eagles even won the game, beating the Jacksonville Jaguars 33-32 on David Akers' 34-yard field goal in the final minute. Vick's return overshadowed a somewhat sloppy effort by an Eagles team that has Super Bowl aspirations.

It was Vick and only Vick who captured fans' attention -- whether he was on the field, on the sideline or sitting on the bench.

Philadelphia coach Andy Reid didn't wait long to use him. The three-time Pro Bowl quarterback jogged onto the field for the second play from scrimmage, lining up as a wide receiver, and got a hearty welcome from the notoriously tough Philly fans.

So much for all those protesters and anti-Vick factions. He entered to a standing ovation from the crowd in a half-empty stadium. Later, some chanted "We want Vick!" after he left the game.

He was on the field for six plays - all in the opening 18 minutes. The results were so-so. He completed all four of his passes for 19 yards, ran for 1 yard and lined up in the slot for one play.

Vick hadn't played in an NFL game since Dec. 31, 2006, with the Atlanta Falcons. He was released from federal custody July 20 after serving 18 months of a 23-month sentence for his role in running a dogfighting ring. He signed a one-year, $1.6 million contract with the Eagles, who hold a $5.2 million option for a second year.

Earlier Thursday, a judge in Newport news, Va., approved Vick's plan to repay creditors $20 million and emerge from bankruptcy.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Frank J. Santoro said while Vick is "at the pinnacle of his profession," he has proven unable to manage his finances in the past and ordered him to retain a financial planner as a condition of approval. The reorganization was overwhelmingly approved in a ballot of creditors and by their representatives in court.

Vick, 29, left the court soon after with his fiancee, Kijafa Frink, to catch a flight back to Philadelphia and make his debut with the Eagles.

"I'm happy it's over. I can move on with my life," said Vick, who was beaming as he left the courthouse. "I think my lawyers did a great job. I commend the judge. I commend the creditors' committee, everybody. We finally got it all together. I'm just happy we can move forward."

The plan approved by Santoro was supported by all but one creditor, which is owed $13,000. It hinges on Vick liquidating an estimated $9 million in assets, including houses, boats and high-end sport utility vehicles and future NFL earnings. He would not have to pay creditors during the first year with the Eagles. If successful, creditors would be paid in six years.

Later Thursday, Donovan McNabb completed 21 of 36 passes for 244 yards and one touchdown. He also threw one interception and his fumble on a backward pass was returned 92 yards for a score by Brian Iwuh.

Jaguars QB David Garrard was 8 for 14 for 93 yards and one interception while leading Jacksonville on one touchdown drive.

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