Quarterback Michael Vick's return to prominence was one of the great stories in all of sports in 2010. He is going to share it on Monday at the NFL's 15th Rookie Symposium, which kicks off Sunday in Aurora, Ohio near the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton. PhiladelphiaEagles.com will be there to document Vick's address to the newest class of NFL players.
The NFL wanted current and former players who have experienced a wide-range of success and challenges in their professional and personal lives.
Vick's story has been well-documented. He was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2001 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons. Vick's athleticism and dynamic playmaking ability took the NFL by storm. He was the face of the franchise, earning a $100 million dollar contract in the process. Vick's Falcons handed Green Bay its first-ever home playoff loss in the 2002 campaign. In the 2004 season, Vick led the Falcons to the NFC title game, which was won by the Eagles.
In 2007, Vick's world was turned upside down when it was revealed that he was involved in a dogfighting operation. He was sentenced to prison for 23 months and served 18 of them in Leavenworth, Kan. before finishing out the sentence under house arrest.
The Eagles offered Vick a second chance when they signed him in 2009. He was a backup to Donovan McNabb and it looked like he would be employed in that same role in 2010 before an injury in the season opener to Kevin Kolb offered Vick the chance to get back on the field. Vick seized the opportunity and never looked back earning his fourth Pro Bowl nomination while leading the Eagles to the NFC East title. Vick was named The Associated Press' NFL Comeback Player of the Year and was signed to another $100 million dollar contract prior to the start of the 2011 campaign.
During the past few years, Vick has teamed up with The Humane Society of the United States to bring attention to dogfighting and speak out against the brutal practice. Vick has made numerous appearances in schools across the country to speak to children about the mistakes he made. Back in March, Vick released a public service announcement against dogfighting.
Former Eagles cornerback and current NFL Vice President of Player Engagement Troy Vincent heads the Rookie Symposium, which is designed to teach the new players about the league's history, experiences, player expectations and professional and social responsibility.
"Each rookie should leave the symposium with the knowledge and history of where our game began, where it is today, and challenged to make a positive personal impact on the future of our game," Vincent said. "The NFL and its clubs are committed to providing players with the best resources to succeed both on and off the field."
Needless to say, Vick's story will be one of the more compelling as most of the players in attendance were huge fans of the Eagles quarterback while growing up.
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