Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick has been the focus of a petition signed by more than 280,000 people to have him removed from being one of the four Legends captains at the 2020 Pro Bowl. The petition, started by Joanna Lind on Change.org, seeks to remove Vick from the role where he would “be honored” and in a position to act as a mentor for the players.
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Lind, who was “absolutely disgusted” said, “When is the NFL going to take any responsibility for the behavior of its current and former players? To honor a man who had zero regard for animals is unacceptable and I would like your help to make sure he is NOT honored at the 2020 NFL Pro Bowl.”
Vick was arrested and pleaded guilty to a federal felony charge related to running a dogfighting ring and served 23 months in federal prison after his 15-acre property was raided in April 2007. The raid uncovered evidence of illegal dogfighting activities, as well as dozens of neglected pit bulls. Three other men were charged alongside Vick and eventually testified that the star quarterback had participated in the execution of a number of dogs and bankrolled gambling funds for the venture, named Bad Newz Kennels. Once the highest paid player in the NFL, Vick lost all endorsement deals and was suspended from his record 10-year, $130 million contract indefinitely without pay.
After filing for bankruptcy, his pieced together his shattered reputation and made a comeback with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2010, throwing for a combined 10,959 yards with the Eagles, New York Jets and Pittsburgh Steelers. He retired in 2017 and signed with FOX Sports as an analyst.
Time will tell if this petition proves worthy of knocking Vick out of the Pro Bowl spot as he is set to serve next to Pro Football Hall of Famers Terrell Davis, Darrell Green and Bruce Smith.