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flying high


Michael Vick spreads his wings for the Eagles!

In just three-short-years after being in a heap of trouble over federal crime convictions/bankruptcy/drug-test failure/etc., Vick has made a triumphant return to playing football in the NFL.

(Michael Vick, Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback)

Vick began his career in the National Football League (in September of 2001), as a quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, and by 2003 he became a player for the Atlanta Falcons, where he stayed for 3.5 years. During his tenure with the Falcons, Vick made NFL history with phenomenal passing and rushing yards, and he also signed endorsement deals with mega-brands such as Coca-Cola, and Nike. But Vick's image began to deteriorate after flared tempers led him to a number of obscene gestures towards fans at his football games, with things really taking a turn for the worst in the summer of 2007, when Vick was found to be guilty of arranging and participating in illegal dogfighting.

(Michael Vick, 2007 arraignment)

According to wikipedia.org, in July of 2007, Vick was federally charged in "an unlawful interstate dog fighting venture known as 'Bad Newz Kennels'." He later pleaded guilty and was sentenced to United States Penitentiary, Leavenworth (Kansas), for 23 months; he was released on July 20, 2009.

(Michael Vick, 2007 detainment)

Ironically, although the Falcons never fully-terminated Vick's contract, he did not return to the team after serving his prison sentence. In August of 2009, Vick signed a 1-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles, under the guidance and recommendation of his mentor Tony Dungy, and later became a full-member of the team in 2010. In February of 2010, BET premiered The Michael Vick Project, a reality-TV series that documented Vick's 'rise from the ashes' surrounding his troubled career, circa 2007-2009.

(BET, 2010 TV series)

Moreover, as Vick continues his climb to the top (post-prison), his football performance began to peak last fall, during week 10 of the 2010 NFL season. On November 15th, 2010, Vick passed for 333 yards and four touchdowns, while he rushed for 80 yards and another two touchdowns against the Washington Redskins, and during week 15 (on December 19th, 2010), Vick led a fourth quarter rally to erase a 21-point deficit and scored three touchdowns, against the New York Giants.

(Michael Vick, December 2010. Philadelphia Eagles vs. New York Giants)

Vick holds the NFL quarterback records for most rushing yards in one game (173), most 100-yard rushing games (8), and most rushing yards in a single season (1,039). Yet, in contrast to Vick's road-to-redemption, there are people in the public who are -still- upset over his past, dogfighting actions. Comcast news reported that Fox analyst Tucker Carlson gave Vick a tongue-lashing, saying the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback "should have been executed." On the other hand, NBC's Peter King reported that President Barack Obama called Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie, to congratulate him for giving Vick a second chance after his release from prison. According to King, the President said that "released prisoners rarely receive a level playing field," and that "Vick's story could begin to change that."

(President Obama)

When he's not on the field, Vick works with the Humane Society, speaking to school and community groups about the cruelty of dogfighting and plans to obtain a dog -as a pet- for his children, once his probation is over in May 2012; that's several dog years from now!

(Michael Vick, Humane Society event)

References:
www.google.com, sports.yahoo.com, en.wikipedia.org, www.nydailynews.com, www.sonsofsimmons.com, www.comcast.net

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