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July 27, 2009

Federal felon Michael Vick allowed to return to work in NFL

Though it is pehaps too soon to call this latest news from the NFL evidence of a successful prisoner reentry, it is notable (and I think appropriate) that Michael Vick will be able to try to play professional football again now that he has completed his federal prison term.  Here are the basics:

Michael Vick can make a conditional return to the National Football League, about two years after he was indefinitely suspended after pleading guilty to federal dogfighting charges.

Vick can practice immediately and play in the preseason’s final two games, if he can find a team that will hire him, the NFL said in a news release.  Commissioner Roger Goodell will consider allowing Vick to play in regular season games by mid-October, the sixth week of the regular season. “My decision at that time will be based on reports from outside professionals, your probation officer and others charged with supervision your activities,” Goodell said in a letter to Vick.  “This step-by-step approach is not meant to be a further punishment and should not be viewed as such. Instead it is intended to maximize the prospect that you can successfully resume your career and your life.”

July 27, 2009 at 04:25 PM | Permalink


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The NFL is setting a bad example by re-instating a convicted felon.

Posted by: BMI Obesity | Jul 27, 2009 7:21:37 PM

Bravo to the NFL for allowing a convicted felon, who served his time (as sentenced by the court system) and "did the time for his crime" to have an opportunity to once again work to take care of themselves and their families. Thank goodness because certainly, he wouldn't be able to get any federal/state money to take care of himself or his children should he fall below the poverty line like so many formerly incarcerated persons do! GO VICK!!

Posted by: Rita | Jul 27, 2009 9:04:56 PM

The NFL is setting a bad example by re-instating a convicted felon.

I don't see any reason why the NFL should impose a second punishment after Vick has already paid a substantial price for his crime. Vick will have a long road back, and it is far from certain that he will ever start at QB again. There have been very few athletes that made a successful return to football after two years away from the game. But if Vick wants a shot, he ought to have it.

Posted by: Marc Shepherd | Jul 28, 2009 9:06:51 AM

This decision should have been an easy one. Convicted felons are allowed to apply for jobs after they serve their time--whether employers choose to hire those felons is up to them. Michael Vick has served his time, and he should be able to at least "apply" to NFL teams--what franchises ultimately decide to do is up to them.

I frankly wouldn't have any of this cruel excuse-mongerer were I a GM of an NFL team, but it's their funeral. Maybe Vick and Dollar-Bill Plaxico can both join the Dallas Cowboys in a show of nostalgia for the good old 80s/90s...

Posted by: Res ipsa | Jul 28, 2009 9:42:59 AM

It's up to the Law to release someone after serving time for animal cruelty.

But I would expect a professional sports league not to support someone who has done something so heinous.

Three years in prison is NOTHING for torturing and abusing God's creatures like Michael Vick did. Forgiveness should come after repenting: something Vick has not shown us.

I have no personal interest in animal rights. I am not biased. I simply believe in living in accordance with the law, and retribution for breaking the law. Justice has not been served here. Not only has Vick been released after torturing and murdering innocent creatures, but he's once again a celebrity with an obscene income, idolized by millions???

I truly cannot believe that the NFL would allow such a disgusting human being to return to be praised as a sports hero again. I am shocked and appalled at the NFL's decision to allow Vick to return to the league. Once a fan of the Eagles, I personally can no longer support them or the NFL.

Posted by: Jesse | Aug 27, 2009 10:05:12 PM

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