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July 27th, 2009
08:29 AM ET

A Second Chance for Michael Vick?

From Executive Producer Cari Hernandez

Michael Vick is back in the NFL. Now all he needs is a team to play for.

Yesterday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell reinstated Vick - with some restrictions.

The former Atlanta Falcons quarterback is free after serving 18 months in prison for bankrolling a dogfighting ring.

He could participate in regular-season games as early as October.

A number of teams have already said they would not be making Vick any offers.

We want to know your thoughts.

Should Michael Vick really be allowed back in the NFL this season?

Filed under: Heidi Collins
soundoff (227 Responses)
  1. MLMa

    My opinion/Second chances are for those who unknowingly do wrong. He knew what he was doing. Needs to earn his rights back first

    July 28, 2009 at 8:45 am |
  2. Copelan86

    He did his time, which means he is corrected. That is what jail/prison is for. Whenever you are released you are a free man. Let him play I assure you he will never do it again. I hate when people won't give prisoners a second chance. Do we really want to punish them more.

    July 28, 2009 at 8:55 am |
  3. Gilbert West

    What would be the point in keeping Michael Vick out of football? There are plenty of people in our country that are guilty of far worse crimes. Oliver North was forgiven, right? He was in the business of killing people, illegally. I personally think dog-fighting is cruel, and dangerous, in that it changes an animal who may otherwise be a good pet or watch dog into an aggressive killing machine. That having been said, I feel that Michael Vick has paid for his poor judgment. 18 months in prison can hardly be viewed as anything other than punishment. He is still young, strong, talented, a good football player. Lets give him a chance to mend his ways. Being vindictive about it serves no purpose. It is mean-spirited, un-American, and down-right ugly.

    July 28, 2009 at 8:56 am |
  4. Jim

    What other choice do we have? It's either allow him to play or end up (and we may just do so anyway) subsidizing his prison term for yet another felony.

    Let's face it, I don't think Michael was prepared for a life after football as a Neurosurgeon, Lawyer, Scientist, etc. Once again, a "jock on a pedestal" gets another "pass" on bad behavior while anyone of us would be still serving time.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:18 am |
  5. buster

    Of course he should be allowed to play. He did his time just like evryone else does and deserves a second chance. I am sorry but when these guys shoot each other, do all kinds of drugs, etc. no one seems to care. The man has paid his debt and there is no other reason for him not to play.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:40 am |
  6. keith bruce

    everyone has the right to work

    July 28, 2009 at 9:43 am |
  7. Delourdes R

    I say Hell yea!!!!!

    he did the crime and done his time.. so move on..

    July 28, 2009 at 9:43 am |
  8. Bobby Lee

    Why not? But, should we reinstate Pete Rose as well?

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  9. RandomThought23606

    He served his time. Let him play.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  10. Terence

    Of Course!!!..Theres no rule anywhere that says you cant have a record...with that said, do you know how many football players there are with worse records?..Theres no question whether he should be able to play or not.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  11. Nancy L. Bert

    We do well to remember that we all make mistakes. Forgiveness is a key element to living a serene life.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  12. Dad in Houston

    If Michael Vick is picked up by an NFL team the parents in the city where that team resides should organize to boycott and bankrupt that franchise. He should NEVER be placed in the position of being a role model to any child in this nation or world.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  13. Janet

    Why wouldnt we give Michael another chance? God forgives everyone, why cant we forgive and move on. That's what's wrong with the world to day, everyone is looking for you to fail and then they want to keep you down!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  14. Nancy Alvillar

    I am a mother with two sons. Our sports figures should be mentors and examples for our children. I do not believe he should be allowed back into the NFL because he is not a good example.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:44 am |
  15. Sharon

    No for Michael Vick. A horrible lesson for children

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  16. Derrick

    What Vick did may have been wrong to mainstream America but he has done his time in a correction facility. I mean he got two years in prison for dogs hurting each other its not like he is a danger to any human. The Commosionor needs to lay off and get rid of his additional 6 game suspension which redicoulos.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  17. Thomas

    I am sure the Cowboys will put in a bid. Go Steelers!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  18. Cindy Plachinski

    A second chance is a good idea for Vic, only because he will be in the news, which should keep people thinking about animal kindness issues...and I think Vic should do something major to help animals, perhaps make a lifetime commitment to helping sheltered dogs and cats. His football earnings can go a long way to that end.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  19. Cliff

    No, Vick should not be allowed to play. Convicted felons pretty much loose their rights completely in this country and why should this one be allowed to make millions after his conviction?

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |


    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  21. Gregory Hess

    Yes, he should be allowed to play. He sentence was not to have the remainder of his life ruined. He has paid a very heavy price and has earned the right to start over

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  22. PSMMike

    I guess Michael Vick served his time and paid his "debt to society" so how could he be kept from football? That being said I for one would boycott ANY team that offered him a job.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  23. Myrtle Bailey

    Michael Vick is evil. He intentionally brutalized multiple dogs over an extended time period. He does not deserve entrance into a national sport. He did time but I am willing to bet he is not rehabilitated. NO WAY WILL I EVER WATCH HIM PLAY AGAIN.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  24. joe gallagher

    He did the crime. He did the time.
    It's over. That's our system. Let's respect it.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  25. Oren Hertz

    Vicks should not be allowed back on the NFL.
    Any other person would not be allowed back at his/her job after such horrible crime.
    This is clearly another "special treatment" for an (arguably) celebrity.
    This needs to stop!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  26. Eric

    Of course Vick should be allowed to play, he paid his debt. That's all America needs is another person putting a strain on the economy because he can't get a job. Give him a chance to redeem himself

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  27. Ashley

    We all make mistakes, We acknowledged his wrong but he deserves to go back to his job

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  28. Jeff

    Michael Vick has just proven to all these young kids that look up to him that it is okay to do what you want because you will be given more than a second chance. These kind of actions is what makes me and my family stop watching professional sports.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  29. Edwin J

    Michael Vick committed a crime. He served his time. He should be allowed to start at the bottom again. America is all about second chances. Michael Vick deserves a second change!

    Rochester, NY

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  30. ilenne

    IF Michael Vick is brought onboard any team, I would hope that those who would, ordinarily, support that team would boycott every game, all merchandse, etc. Vick deserves to be shunned by the NFL.....forever.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  31. Kofi Owusu

    He should be allowed back to the nfl, this is he way of making means for his family and besides people have done worse and have gotten off free. People killing people is more important, regardless of his guilt or innocence.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  32. Raul

    He did the crime and then he did the time. He, and anyone else in the same position deserves a second chance. I am convicted felon myself. I worked for 10 years for the same employer but when they found out about my criminal past I was terminated. After I was released from prison I turned my life around. I went to college where I obtained 2 Associate's Degree, 1 Bachelor's Degree, and 1 Master's Degree in Computer Science but despite my best efforts I have been unemployed for over 20 months because no one wants to give a second chance although I paid for my mistakes.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  33. Joey K

    I think Michael Vick should get a second chance in the NFL. He was punished (put in jail) in order to learn a lesson and to serve justice to his victims. Theoretically, the punishment returned the equillibrium that Vick upset; everything should be the way it was before Vick did anything wrong.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  34. Troy I

    Once again, the NFL has demonstrated that tickets are more important than character, principles and integrity. The NFL has openly been tolerating off-the-field crimes and other misdeeds for too long. Shame on the NFL for coddling more malefactors.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  35. Alvin

    Personally, I know how much people love dogs but they are still animals. If you eat beef/pork and have seen how they slaughter cows and pigs then I dont think you should have much to say. However, having dogs fight to their death is morally wrong but should not determine a man's fate... ie 2 years of jail, 3 years of probation, and the possibility of not participating in what you know and love.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  36. Jimmy Painter

    He did his time. If we play into the politics of not letting a felon who served his time then we are only adding to the statistic that because you went to prison you shouldn't be allowed to work. He has already been punished. Fully agree with Copelan86, he was corrected. If we argue he wasn't then maybe we need to change to prison system. We probably still need to change it anyway...

    July 28, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  37. Oren Davidson

    Mike should have been sentenced to the same type of torture those dogs were subjected to. Does anybody watch Dogtown on NatGeo? Does any of you know the stories of these dogs and what actually happened to them?

    He should not be allowed back into the NFL. The only time a man like this should be in the spotlight is to show our kids what not to become. Society should shun such an individual.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  38. Randy D

    I don't think a team will offer him a job this year. As good as he was, the risk is too great that the fans will be repulsed.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  39. Ruth Ann

    I don't think he should be allowed back into the NFL. What kind of example is that for our young kids. Its says that it is o.k. to do whatever you want as long as you pay for it and then go on with your life as if nothing happened.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  40. pamela surasky

    Michael Vick should be allowed to play football, he makes a fine example for the youth of this country. CNN and all media should not be wasting time on this convicted fellon, rather it should show the faces of the American service men and women who give their lives in Iraq and Afganistan every week. Vick is unimportant.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  41. Barbara J. Bauman

    As a great animal lover, if Michael lVick comes back in the NFL I will no longer watch any football. And believe me I am a great foot ball fan. Yes, I will cut off my nose to spit my face, That is the only way we can keep people like him from returning and earning millions of dollars after what he has done. Glad he served his jail time, but he needs to find a new career, maybe it should be as a vet tech. Or on the road with people like Animal Cops Detroit, etc. Barbara Bauman

    July 28, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  42. Pat James

    Of course he needs another chance. He has served his time, probably more than someone not so famous just becasue he IS famous, and now he needs to work his way back into society. One of the problems with our justice/social system is that those released from prison have such a hard time working their way back. Everyone will profit if we as a society can correct this situation, and Michael Vick is as worthy of a second chance as anyone else.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  43. Charles Bouchard

    To consider that our prison system does not reform criminals and make them equal to a normal citizen after thier reform. It then relegates all one time criminals to a life-long label that removes them from civilized society forever. There is no such thing as reform then. All criminals are life-sentences. You are then pro-death penalty for all infractions. Our founding fathers would consider this cruel and unusual punishmen no doubt.
    As such, When your have paid your dues, you have paid your dues.
    Let the man rejoin our society.
    He has reformed. Our system has labeled him such.
    If you feel still anger, it is irrational, or you do not truly believe in the system.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  44. Bill Rearden

    I do not Michael Vick should get a second chance for NFL. He should have thought twice and yes he did deserve to go to jail. The dogfighting he did bot care. I think 18 months in jail was way to short.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  45. Dean

    I am an animal lover and believe what he did was unconscionable. He should never be allowed to return. The sense of sportsmanship has long disappeared with the commercialization of what has become an industry instead of a sport.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  46. Hattie Rose Banks

    I am a 61-year-old white female animal lover who believes dog fighting is wrong on every level and totally dispicable. But, Michael Vick has been punished for his crimes. What more do we want from him? Let him play football! He has the right to make a living.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  47. hannagal

    i think he should be allowed to play why not he payed the price for what he did so give him a chance to prove himself. Everyone makes mistakes and we should be easy to forgive he without sin cast the first stone.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  48. Joyce

    Absolutely not! I love animals and in my opinion anyone who would harm an innocent dog should ROT in jail. if any team does hire him I my wish is that they loose every single game! If he would torure animals who knows what he might do to others players if they upset him.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  49. Animal Lover

    No, I do not think Michael Vick should be allowed to ever play in the NFL. It was a slap in the face when I heard he was allowed to play again. What about all those dogs he abused and killed? People say he paid his dues, I definitely don't think so. His sentence was not nearly severe or long enough. Where is the justice for the animals who can not protect themselves from evil people like Vick! Michael Vick is back to making millions and what a roll model for more abuse to innocent animals. Bravo to the NFL commissioner! Talk about BOYCOTT of the game!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  50. Alan Smith

    Under no circumstances should any team employ Alan Vick. He has clearly demonstrated what kind of human being he is. This is not a misdemeanour or a "mistake"- this is a fundamental character deficit. Anyone who can do what he did is without
    the fundamental concept of what being a human being is about.
    I am disgusted with the NFL – they have lost credibility. It's all about money after all.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  51. Joseph Williams

    Michael Vick is being crucified by the public and the media and has been for 18 months. While I have been a dog owner and lover for my entire life I definitely do not like dog fighting I do think there are far worse things that can be done in this world. Bernie Madoff has ruined thousands of people's lives. People will no longer be able to support themselves when they retire, because Mr. Madoff stole billions and hear we are we barely speak of the man now. I also think Michael Vick was thrown under the bus. I don't think Michael Vick is innocent, but I do think if Michael Vick had better friends and family around him he would have done better. He had family members who had a "hood"mentality. They looked for a way to make quick money instead of doing what millions of American's do, and that is get a decent 9-5 and work hard for what they have. Then once they saw they would face jail time they threw their own cousin under the buss who helped them out with a place to live. Michael Vick served his time so now it is time to let him redeem himself surely we all have done one or two things we are no longer proud of!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  52. diane

    he should be able to go back to his life. I am not a sports fan and feel they are all overpaid and over idolized, but the man paid his debt and should now start over with the rest of his life intact.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  53. ylonda white

    Yes,he does deaerve a second chance. Yes,what he did was wrong–and hopefully,he will have the good sense not to do it again.Everyone deserves a second chance–especially since his dues to society have been paid.
    OI cannot and will not condone him for his stupidity–and one has to admit he was supids,ignorant especially at the salary he was making,but as stated earlier he did pay his dues to society and hopefully learned a very hard lesson–sometimes it doesn't help to have alot of money and think you are avove the law especially being a black man in the south.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  54. Alvin

    Also, convicted felons who are not able to contribute to our economy bring it down. Give the man his job back and allow him to channel those millions in another direction.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  55. JG

    There are plenty of people walking around doing as they please and have done much worse things than Michael Vick. He has served his time, why should we still punish him. Let us put the shoe on the other foot, what would you want to happen if it were you? Would you want people always throwing the error you made in your face? Come on; do unto others as you want them to do unto you. People murder people and get less time than what Vick had to do for killing a darn dog, come on!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  56. Rosa T. Sadler - Philadelphia, PA

    Michael Vick was wrong for the horrible abuse he did against the animals but.....So, many Abusers against women have been ignored and continues to be ignored. As a Survivor of Domestic Violence, I was truly upset about this but...I am more upset that, our Justice Systems ignores a lot more when it involves woman and horrible abuse.

    Yes, he should be give a change to play football and I pray that, he will do the right things to protect animals.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  57. julie

    I don't see why he should not be able to play. There are guys playing sports who have done much worse than he has done. He is great football player.

    I am behind you 100%.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  58. AprilM

    I think that Michael paid his debt to society already, so I think that it is only fair to allow him to play in the NFL. I'm not saying that what he did was right, because it was hurtfully wrong, but there are CERTAIN guys that played in the NFL after murdering, raping or beating someone. So he really deserves the right to redeem himself. I have to agree with others and say that he shouldn't be punished anymore, BUT he should become a bigger advocate for animal rights!!! It's only fair. GO MIKE VICK!!!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  59. john cavafaio

    Vick, should be suspended for life. Send him to Iraq so he can get a dose of reality!

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  60. Sakarya.Q

    We have serveral high end people who commit worse crimes and continue to do what they do. Some dont even serve time. So why should he not be able to continue to play football.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  61. gina

    He will be back in jail again for the same thing. These sports players will money are always getting in trouble.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  62. Matthew

    NO! He knew exactly what he was doing, he was found guilty in court. Yes, he did serve his time but rehabilitation? Come on! Mr West feels it's "mean spirited" and I suppose training and running and making money (let us not forget ) on the killing of animals that have no way of saying to you no is a tad "mean spirited". It has nothing to do with being American or not. This is not a political situation. He should've considered al of this before. I am sick to death of famous people and athletes thinking they can do whatever they want without consequences.
    Thank You. I feel better now.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  63. Lloyd X

    Yes Michael should be allowed to play. Americans claim they believe in the justice system, but yet take a look at O.J. regardless of the decision of the court, Americans weren’t happy. Had a conviction came thru Americans would have been happy. Now with Vick, he has served his time according to the law, the courts, but are the Americans happy, no a bunch of hypocrites. He has served his time, now leave the man alone. But once again, he has done wrong, which is fuel for the Media. The Media will feed on the wrong.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  64. chuck b / coastal n.carolina

    We the people that pays PSL's and pays for the entertainment should be applauded that Vick is back.These guys (NFL players) have had a life of dreams given to them, if they screw up, that is it. He should not be allowed back. Ask your self... do you want your kids idealizing a person like this ???

    July 28, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  65. Jonathan Bradley

    Yes, he should be reinstated. America is a country of second chances. Although he is not the greatest QB ever, he is a dynamic and exciting player who has payed his debt to society. The fans should not be robbed of seeing his unique style of play just because of the emotional reaction to the type of crime he committed. There are other players who have committed/been accused other violent crimes (rape, armed robbery, weapons possession) who are playing without all the questions.

    I would like to see him become more visibly and actively contrite. To find a way to reach out to animal lovers in a compelling way to show that he has truly learned from his mistakes, but I do not think that is necessarily a requirement for him to rejoin football.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  66. vernon clarke

    The man has spent his time..does this mean he is a free man? YES..Please let him live his life FREE...and be allowed to play for whoever understands what forgiveness is about ...One Love

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  67. Joseph

    The justice system is designed to punish all offenses society deems punishable after which the offender is expected to be rehabilitated into society. Michael Vick has been sentenced and he has served his time so by the pre-set standard it is time for his rehabilitation. He is a gifted athlete – he should be allowed to re-engage his gift in order to survive, sustain himself and his family while being a productive member of society once again. The question should not be to play or not to play … the question should be what moral right do we have to stop him if he has already served his time.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  68. M. McCar

    Sure, Michael Vick, should be allowed to play in the NFL. The real trick, now, will be getting a team to pick Vick at the risk of alienating fans who are sick of Vick.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  69. Lisa Fleisher

    I don't know why the NFL reinstated Michael Vick, but I am glad that no team has yet to offer to sign him. His crimes against animals were heinous and no doubt any team that would have him would get a great deal of bad publicity. A sports team is about cooperation, and signing Vick would signal complicity by the other team members in his terrible actions. He should be completely shunned by professional football.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  70. Natalie

    As an owner of a business that rescues dogs scheduled for euthanasia, retrains them for service to the disabled – and as a lifelong dog lover: Yes. Absolutely and without reservation Vick should play again.

    I suspect there are those who, with unrighteous indignation, would prefer he spend a life sentence for his dog fighting crimes. These are people who have never known or understood (at least) redemption and the power of hope to change the human heart. They are also people who might be more willing to release a caucasian serial killer before Vick.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  71. LAB

    YES, He shouldn't have went to jail for that anyway. People need to care about PEOPLE getting killed or murdered, this society is so backwards.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  72. Jeff S

    I believe the commisioner is just part of the good ole boys club that will always have an attitude when it comes to black players period you can just tell by his stature of wanting to make a point of who is really in charge of league dominated by black players....saying that I dont like his rationale do to the fact this man has served 2yrs of his life behind bars over some "DOGS", Michael definately deserves a 2nd chance without strings ...last I checked there were no dogs that play in the NFL so what is the issue commisioner has??????????

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  73. Charles B.

    This is ridiculous. He's done almost 2 years in prison and people are still calling for blood. What America needs to ask itself is do we hold ourselves to the standards that we impose on others and will we be forgiven for the blood on our hands.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  74. cory


    July 28, 2009 at 9:53 am |
  75. Jimmy Painter

    Okay, some of these comments are pretty ridiculous. In a capitalist society, we let the best flourish. If mistakes are made, they should be corrected. In this case it was corrected. If you are going to argue that he shouldn't be allowed to make millions after being a convicted felon then how much should he be allowed to make? Should his income forever be stunted because he went to prison? In this country we reward the successful and punish the wicked. He is both and deserves both. Need I remind you that he has already filed chapter 11 bankruptcy? He lost it all, lets give him a chance to get it back. If you people are so god faring, where is your sense of redemption? Don't be a hypocrit.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:53 am |
  76. Foley Harper, Ocilla, GA

    That Commissioner Goodell would reinstate Vick even on a conditional basis astounds me. We're talking about giving Vick a chance to resume his previous status as possible role model and megabucks athlete. The NFL should not be sending the message that such intentional cruelty to animals and disregard for laws may be rectified by a mere 2 yrs. in prison and several years probation. The letter Ronald Menaker, chairman of the AKC, wrote to Commissioner Goodell clearly stated facts that the NFL should have weighed more heavily before making its decision to reinstate Vick.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:54 am |
  77. MLMa

    Does the application for that position carry a question "have you ever been convicted of a felony" that would prevent any other from getting that same position? Is he getting special opps or is he treated just like any other having served for such a crime? Food for thought. He has served yes, Poor judgment makes it ok? he knew it was Wrong. Good luck M.Vick, I wish you well. Remember, kids look up to players as models.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:54 am |
  78. Alisia

    Like it or not, Vik is a celebrity. With this status comes a responsibility to act justly and make just decisions as he is held to a higher standard. Unfortunately our society makes heros of sports stars. Agreeably he has served his sentence and declared a banruptcy. Most will say that he has paid his dues. But imagine the dogs that were forced to fight to the death for their own survival. This is not a dog's nature and is truly barbaric. I would NOT support a football team with anyone who was ever involved in such an activity. NFL teams who look to bring Vik on board should consider this.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:55 am |
  79. Sakarya.Q

    Sports players are in the news all the time for performance inhancements, sex scandles, drugs and far more but Its okay for them to continue to be role models for our kids, and they shoot Micheal Vick down. If thats the case everyone with a record who playes sports needs to be drooped.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:56 am |
  80. Thomas

    NO. Monstrous activity. Did his time, out of jail-good. NFL? No-it's a privilege-what's next, pedophiles reinstated and able to play/earn millions? Sorry, his 'mistake' "bankrolling"(!) dogs tearing each other to death keep him off the grid iron and perhaps doing community service at the local kennel-scooping poop from empty kennels. I'm a huge FB fan and I will never watch any game with this sick, sorry excuse for a human playing.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:57 am |
  81. Jack

    Yes. He served his sentence in prison. The NFL commissioner reviewed his case for the good of the NFL and now each NFL team will do the same. Let free market decide if he's worth the potential PR damages to the team.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:57 am |
  82. Animal Lover in Cooper City Florida

    While Michael Vick has "served his sentence" I do not think he should be reinstated in the NFL without certain conditions. He needs to prove that he is truly "rehabilitated" and vow to reject the barbaric "sport" of dog fighting. Pofessional athletes have a huge influence on youth, and if he becomes an advocate for animal rights, perhaps sets up a foundation, etc. he can possibly turn around the negative feelings I believe most people feel about him.

    Michael Vick stands to receive millions of dollars if he returns to professional football. Sharing some of that bounty with needy animals would be a great way to show his remorse and humanity.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:57 am |
  83. Mel Saginaw, MI

    Why not? If Marth Stewart can serve time in federal prison for committing a crime and return back to her major network TV show and continue to build her billion dollar empire, why shouldn't Vick? I don't recall this same polling when Martha Stewart was released. Let's avoid the double standard. And she didn't even lose the millions that Vick did. The NFL was his job and was not related to the crime. Any American who serves their time for a crime should be able to return to gainful employment if they qualify or no conflicting interest.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:58 am |
  84. Sandra McCall

    I love animals, own a rescured Greyhound and a 19 year old cat and I find Michael Vick's conviction, the media coverage and this human outrage ridiculous. There are greater offenses in our country, like adults abusing children, which is often dealt with in less harsh manners than Vick's conviction. I don't know...if we had as much outrage at child abuse, the deplorable educational conditions for many of our children, lack of access to medical care for millions of Americans, then maybe we could get something done. All those folks that marched and held up signs against Michael Vick – take that energy and fight against all the inequities that exist for your neighbor and maybe we will get some real change to help the lives of everyday Americans.

    July 28, 2009 at 9:59 am |
  85. John

    His dog fighting operation was going on for quite a while . This was not a one time event . Many dogs were killed or suffered from the dog fights .
    I feel he needs to do more volunteer work to help shelter dogs . Do you think he is truly sorry ? I'm sure he is sorry for loosing all he had , but is he sorry for the pain he has caused to all those dogs ? Don't reward him by letting him play football again .

    July 28, 2009 at 9:59 am |
  86. Robert

    Normally I would be quite forgiving, but Vick made millions, participated in deviant acts, tried to avoid responsibility, and used taxpayers to rebound (by filing for bankruptcy). He should have his second chance, but he should be forced to have that opportunity in the civilian world–not in the NFL.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:00 am |
  87. Suzanne

    I think it's a real travesty to allow convicted criminals to continue to play in sports. Most notably being Vick, of course. But there have been others found to have used steroids and other performance enhancing drugs. There have been vehicular homicides, DUIs, and any number of other convictions in the sports world. They portray themselves as devoutly religious people, then we find they have a second family. They get a slap on the wrist and continue with their multi-million dollar career.

    My daughter was arrested for a peer group shoplifting event. She stole a $35 dollar bra. She's been given far more stringent requirements on her road to "redemption" than most athletes face when they are found to have "violated ethic standards" of their sport. I think that reveals that something is really wrong with our system.

    Don't let these criminals have access to their million dollar careers any longer. Don't let them play. Don't let them be role models for our children, rather let the athletes who really ARE athletes – the ones that perform with their innate gifts while they lead a good, decent life.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:01 am |
  88. Donald White

    Let Micheal Vick play now. His time away in prison cause him to serve a suspension from the game of football. I don't recall him having the option of being release on game days to play football if a team would accept him. Micheal Vick is a great athlete, the team that gives him a second chance will be rewarded amicably ( Super Bowl Champs) for displaying grace. If Micheal Vick remains sincere to himself, GOD is on his side.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:02 am |
  89. Biff Warren

    It concerns me that we are willing to put Michael Vick in prison for bank rolling dog fights, something that has been taking place throughout the USA and the world for tens of years – in the meanwhile Police are killing innocent people and walking away with it. American citizens are losing thier homes and jobs, Insurance companies are making decisions which allow people to die- and yet the life and well being of an animal is worth more than a human life. I love Dogs and would never want any harm to come to them but when we have bomb sniffing police dogs and/or bedbug sniffing dogs, or seeing eye dogs isn't is the same cruelty. Why hasn't Barnum Bailey been charged with the same crime.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:04 am |
  90. Marie

    Why shouldn't Michael Vick get a second chance when some murderers (they've killed human beings) do? Besides, the 23 month jail time was absolutely too excessive in relation to the crime involved and although I couldn't deliberately hurt a dog, it seems to me that too often, animals are treatred way better than humans in this country.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:04 am |
  91. C.Wright

    I have no problem with Mr. Vick being reinstated into the NFL. However I do have a few questions. To get him into competitive shape, will he be beaten and kicked? When he is injured, will he be 'patched up' with no care given to the pain he is in? If Mr Vick does not perform as well as he should, will he be shot? Drowned? Set on fire? When he retires, will he be used as a tackeling dummie, tied up, teeth pulled. Don't be mislead. Mr Vick not only funded this horrific behavior, he was an active PARTICIPANT. Would you want to be on a team with a person capable of this kind of behavior?

    July 28, 2009 at 10:05 am |
  92. Jason

    Mike payed his debt to society why not let him play back into the NFL? He went to Prison, Lost his job and millions of dollars from his contract and not to mention his indorsements, and is labeled for life as a dog killer. what more do people want from him? doesn't the Bible teach us to forgive? if your son, brother, husband or any family member commited a crime wouldn't you forgive him? Let the man do what he does best and thats play football!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:05 am |
  93. Felicia

    Yes he should be given a chance to rebuild his life! He should not have gone to jail in the first place. Of course what he did was immoral and cruel to an extent but what amazes me is how Vick is literally being treated like a murder, child molestor, rapist, etc. Get a grip America! We have bigger fish to fry rather than focusing our attention on Vicks dumb mistake. Let him live his life in peace. Why cut off his means fo earning a living?

    July 28, 2009 at 10:07 am |
  94. Terry

    What he did is so cruel. Why should he deserve to go back to playing in the NFL? Coaches set the trend and if one can remember the good old days of the NFL when Mr. Roger Staubach and Mr. Tom Landry, Mr. Vince Lombardi not to mention The Fun Bunch of the Redskins or Mr. Schula, of what employees of the NFL should live as and and how to exhibit values and good examples to our youth.

    Just look at the results of those poor souls he scared forever. Best Friends Animal Santuary did a great article on some of the remaining dogs and they are coming along. They were given the one thing that Mr. Vick could not give and that was Love. They are now slowly coming around but so many had to die for his thrill.
    Sure we could forgive him and he probably will end up playing again and if he does let him give his salary to abused animals and spend his spare time in a community based service where he can help rebuild his soul.

    I pray for you Mr. Vick.


    July 28, 2009 at 10:08 am |
  95. mymanhenri

    Of course he should get a 2nd chance. Vick has done the albeit very excessive time, and should be reinstated. I fully agree with the notion that the NFL is a privilege and not a right, but the league and the media have almost ruined dude's career. After making an "example of him" in the legal system, they have literally turned Vick into a toxic asset. Any team willing to sign him will be faced with a maelstrom of criticism and demonstrations and there are the sponsors.... ugh. Jamal Lewis was not raked over the coals and he faced DRUG CHARGES (cocaine). Vick has paid, with time and TONS OF MONEY (past and future contracts). Could there be a worst sentence? Let's see this man thrill us like he once did and not have him hammered to a crucifix over a mistake.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:09 am |
  96. Felicia

    Yes he should be given a chance to rebuild his life! He should not have gone to jail in the first place. Of course what he did was immoral and cruel to an extent but what amazes me is how Vick is literally being treated like a murderer, child molestor, rapist, etc. Get a grip America! We have bigger fish to fry rather than focusing our attention on Vick's dumb mistake. Let him live his life in peace. Why cut off his means for earning a living?

    July 28, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  97. ART

    Please let us know how many pro football and pro baseball have cause the death of a human or animal and how were they treated. Not because they are black or white. But I know of a death of a person and that pro was allowed to continue to play and served no time. But that was a human, I sorry I find that hard to believe.
    Let him play and continue with his life. He served his time paid his debt.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  98. Copelan86

    So I guess Martha Stewart shouldn't be on televison instead she should be working at safeway since she broke the law. Vick should not lose his rights to play. That's what he went to jail for. Common sense people common since. And about being a role model such your kids look up to fffaaarrrr worse celebrities. Stop complain. Shut up and color.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:13 am |
  99. KL

    After hearing this morning, that Michael Vick will be reinstated by the NFL to play again, with only a slap on the wrist, I can only say:
    After over 40 years of football at our house, WE ARE TURNING OFF ALL NFL FOOTBALL, AND WILL NOT BUY ANY PRODUCTS ENDORSED BY THEIR COMMERCIAL ADVERTISERS. Enough is enough. We're also asking our friends and neighbors to do the same. They feel as we do. We live in a part of the country that media makes fun of for being "redneck". We have serious problems with dog fighting here, meth labs, and the other issues that we battle daily as moral issues, that are totally unacceptable. We also grow food, have a high rate of college graduates, and can look each other in the eyes when we meet in town. The NFL has just issued it's own moral statement: that Football as an honorable game is dead, and they'll do whatever they want to make money, and fans won't care. They won't care that the players are no longer role models for anyone, and will contract with convicted felons. Shame on Michael Vick, shame on the NFL. We won't miss you. This isn't the first episode in professional sports where a serious compromise was made for a buck. What message are we sending to our children, and the rest of the world?

    July 28, 2009 at 10:13 am |
  100. David

    Dear Heidi, good morning,

    Not only has Michael Vick served his sentence and made a public apology, hasn't he also done community service in an animal shelter? I think dog fighting, that Michael Vick bankrolled and was involved in, is cruel, mean, and senseless. But he has faced up to what he's done wrong, had to deal with the consequences, and has made a good faith effort to redress his crimes. I hope he receives a chance to play again.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  101. Jon

    After NFL Commissioner Roger Goddell took action yesterday to impose a six-game suspension on Michael Vick, this is a strong indication that he has served his time and move to the next phase of his life. Vick did nothing to take away from the integrity of the NFL itself, but rather made a mistake in his personal life. This mistake, awful in many ways, is one that he has paid the ultimate price in his personal freedom. America is a place of second chances with many that have received redemption in their careers (Marion Barry, President Bill Clinton, etc) and Vick is no exception.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:17 am |
  102. Lynn

    Vick should never play in the nfl. Drowning puppies and beating dogs is an indication of a deeper problem. A disregard for life . Post pic here of the condition of those animals so people remember the atrocities he was a part of. I will give up football if he becomes a part of it again. I was disappointed in his reinstatement and wonder how a person taking a steroid is worse than what he has done.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:21 am |
  103. Oren Davidson

    So does this mean that violent felons across the country should get their job back after serving their time?

    July 28, 2009 at 10:22 am |
  104. Toni

    I personally believe Vick should be given a second chance. He served his time and has paid his debt. There are other cases involving former athletes, movies stars, government officials, and regular no name individuals that were able to come back from similar if not more severe chargers and convictions. Although these cases are slim that still does not negate the fact that they do occur. Many statistics show that the majority of ex cons find it difficult to transition back into society. If Vick is granted a second chance he has the ability to avoid becoming apart of the statistic. Spending nearly 2 years in federal prison was enough time for him to reflect and adapt a new perspective of life. He paid his debt to society now I say allow him the opportunity to regain the trust and favor of society through his performance of a sport that millions of Americans admire.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:29 am |
  105. tengu

    I think Vick deserves a second chance. Ist that the idea behind prison,
    To reform and rehabilitate individuals deemed unfit by society? If he had not been reinstated because of
    This incident then it would prove that the justice/prison system is just another bankroll outfit
    For somebody in Washington. Like everything else an excuse to tax Americans.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:32 am |
  106. R.Taylor

    I agree Mr. West. For people to suggest that Mike Vick shouldn't be allowed to play in the NFL is absurd. I love dogs, and I have dogs. I would never hurt or harm any one of them. But he did, and he paid the price for it. i.e. jail time, away from the NFL, lost endorsements, lost homes/property. I mean, what else do you want? I am so glad we have a judicial system that makes the over all decision. Because some people are just unreasonable. I just pray that everyone ruling with this iron fist, never find themselves in a situation whether intentional or unintentional judge by someone with same iron fist.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:35 am |
  107. May

    The "time" never fitted the crime. Of course he should be reinstated.
    He's young, talented, but not blond. Hmm...

    July 28, 2009 at 10:44 am |
  108. Eric

    This is not a question of second chance, but a question of the right to work and to return to ones profession. Mr. Vick committed an offense for which he was found guilty and has since served his sentence. Prior to his conviction, Mr. Vick earned a living in the NFL as a professional football player. Mr. Vick's ability to earn a living was based on his skills and dedication to his profession. His profession was not illegal and his crime was not related to his profession. Therefore, not unlike any other profession, Mr. Vick should have the opportunity to petition for reinstatement with suspension being the maximum allowable punishment. However, he should certainly be allowed to return to the league.

    Mr. Vick simply made an extremely poor decision for which he has dearly paid. However, like any other convicted felon, Mr. Vick deserves the right to work and to one day return to the NFL. However, if Mr. Vick was attempting to obtain veterinarians license, the outrage would be justifiable.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:45 am |
  109. Jimmy Painter

    To KL,
    Thank you for not watching NFL. NFL doesn't want you anyway. You are completely overreacting and are a fanatic. It people like you who are so far beyond reason that they are completely unable to cope with the moral questions life has to ask. Go back to your podunk redneck town. You won't be missed. Actually, I forgive you. I have to ability to believe in redemption. Do as you wish because Americans died for that right. If you choose to never watch NFL again, I wish you and yours the best and hopefully you can find something to watch every football season while I enjoy watching Michael Vick make a comeback and redeem himself.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  110. jeff

    YES Vick does deserve a 2nd chance. People do a lot morre wrong and get less. Even in this mixed up world. I am having trouble explaining this to my 10 year old.

    thank you

    July 28, 2009 at 10:53 am |
  111. Lissa

    what he did was horrible no doubt but people deserve a second chance I believe. But the Team he's playing for should be ready for some criticism from the public!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:53 am |
  112. Robyn

    Many, many felons have a very difficult time finding work after being released from prison. Why should Michael Vick get it any easier?

    July 28, 2009 at 10:53 am |
  113. Ashley

    Vick did his time, let him play. If it was someone that wasn't famous, people wouldn't know or care about it.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:54 am |
  114. Sandy

    YES!! He has paid his dues and should be allowed to play from DAY ONE!!! He messed up but, we must all move on and STOP judging. If Donte Stallworth is not in prison from killing a human being because of DUI, why can't Vick play in the NFL? Our justice system is compleyely screwed up!!!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:54 am |
  115. Roni Andrews

    NO! The dogs he killed did not get a second chance. He knowingly committed the crime, committed a felony and killed innocent dogs. There should be no reward for this behavior, particularly allowing him in a position that makes his appear a positive public figure to children. No!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  116. Doreene

    I think Michael Vick should be allowed to play. He learned his lesson. And the next time his "friends" ask him to invest in a business, he'll do something sensible like buy them a McDonalds franchise!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  117. nettie

    i am happy for mickle he deserves a second chance,
    he is a young man and deserves it .

    July 28, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  118. jean

    Of course Mike Vick deserves another chance. This is what America is all about.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  119. george

    Sure he paid his dept to society....

    July 28, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  120. joe

    He is a convicted felon and yet they are willing to let him play and earn millions again. An average citizen isn't given that chance to make millions and has a hard time just getting a good paying job but yet we are entertaining the thought of having him return to the NFL and become a role model. He blew his chance of that. His second chance is becoming a free average guy that is a convicted felon.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  121. John

    If it was anyone one but a black athlte he would still be in jail!! He should not be allowed to play in the NFL EVER AGAIN!!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:56 am |
  122. Bart L

    I think Vick should not receive a second chance. Commish Goodell is always tough on people and i think he gave Vick the benefit of the doubt. What Vick did is despicable and I dont think he should get another chance. And he has little fans left and no team will sign him so his chance of playing in the NFL is very slim

    July 28, 2009 at 10:56 am |
  123. Nick Barney

    Vick got more jail time for killing animals then some do for killing people. Killing animals is a part of American Culture. If Vick was killing cows, then no one would care. To not allow this man to play a football game until Week 6 is ridiculous, and lowers the chances of him playing for a team. Maybe Roger Goodell should spend TWO YEARS in prison.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  124. Constance Swift

    No Michael Vick SHOULD not play football EVER AGAIN! He took helpless animals, who look to us for love and affection and support, and threw them against walls, electrocuted them, and pitted them against each other. No way should he ever be able to do what HE loves again!

    Constance Swift
    Wakefield, RI

    July 28, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  125. Cliff

    I guess it shows what our society has become. Someone caught with drugs does more time than someone responsible for killing several helpless animals.

    If he's broke after coming out of jail, isn't that his fault for mismanaging his millions he made in the NFL prior to being imprisoned?

    Our children, who will be responsible for our care in our old age, are watching and learning!!!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  126. Dwan D. Jones

    I think Michael Vick has learned his lesson. He made a mistake and didn't try to overshadow it by long drawn out trials trying to weasel out of it. In returne, society and justice asked him to serve time in prison. He paid his dues and loss millions of dollars a the same time. He deserves another chance at life. If a person can't serve time and then get on with life, then the justice system should be looked at as being biased.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  127. Ann

    He still has a couple years of eligibility left with the Hokies. Maybe he should go back to Virginia Tech and let them educate him a bit first. Besides, they haven't had a good QB since he left.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  128. Bobby Clemmons

    Please help me to understand NFL player gets drunk, kill a pedestrian and gets probation and a few days in jail and Michael Vick gets nailed for bank rolling chicken fights? Something is amiss in our justice system.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:57 am |
  129. Amy

    He should have to try and get a job like everyone else. He had a chance and he blew it. Athletes are over paid and hyped as it is; he is a bad societal example who would be rewarded in millions after showing his true cruel character.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:58 am |
  130. Corey

    Heidi, I read a few of the comments mentioning that Michael Vick shouldn't play because of his position as a role model who, in a sense, set a bad example. I say, what better opportunity to give to a child the chance to see and understand why someone makes a mistake and how to learn from it. We should all be willing to give one another a 'second chance' and use that as a teaching lesson for our children in forming good judgements and how to avoid making the same mistakes.

    Let's give him a second chance!

    July 28, 2009 at 10:58 am |
  131. Patti Ellis

    Even though I am still very angry at him I guess everyone deserves a 2nd chance. However because I volunteer at animal shelters and see the damage people like him have done to helpless dogs the time he served is not enough. I think that he should do the right thing and pay 10% of his earnings to a central fund that will donate to animal rescue shelters and hospitals for as long as he gets to play for the NFL.
    I know a lot of people are like me; I personally would like to feel that he did have a change of heart while he served time.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:58 am |
  132. chip

    Redemption is the bases of our correctional system. After you have served an alotted time in isolated reflectioin there is suppose to be the opportunity for redemption. Michael Vick has served his time. It is up to him to prove himself or become another Pac Man. It would seem if Michael wanted to convince people of his redemption that he dedicate his life to eliminating animal cruelty. That would convince those doubters and the rest of the world of his change.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:58 am |
  133. Wimjohn

    The NFL is a business, and Mike Vick has a huge presence in that industry. Two years ago, the Falcon season ticket holders all but demanded their money back. The games lacked excitement, and fans... Mike Vick would change all that.

    If Terrell Owens can get a million second chances; Mike Vick should get at least one.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:59 am |
  134. sharon

    Heidi, Please read! Sure Michael Vick should be allowed to play ball. How about one of the members of the ku Klux Klans, a senator of ours, should he have been allowed to still sit in the senate to make laws? How about those people that killed several people during the Civil Rights movement? Should they be allowed to be active in government. Remember these were dogs that he hurt or killed they were not people. If during the Civil Rights movement and slavery, the objects of the abuse at the hand of white people were dogs, we would have less of a disparity today.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:59 am |
  135. Darlene

    Why shouldn't Michael Vick be reinstated? We permit criminals from other countries to come here and become gainfully employed yet we do not permit our own U.S. citizens to return to a productive way of life once they have been convicted of a (felony) crime and completed their sentence. Lets have true justice for all.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:59 am |
  136. Patricia Cano

    He should not ever be able to play football. A sports player should be an example to young people. He is an awful person. If you saw how those dogs were treated it would make you sick. He also gave the beautiful sweet pit bull bread a worse name.

    July 28, 2009 at 10:59 am |
  137. Nat White

    There was a major dog ring bust that hit recently and itbarely got any attention. I think that Michael Vick has more than paid the price in lost income and missing peak playing time not to mention the active jail time plus probation. I think enough is enough? Is thithe same country where an athlete got a 30 day sentence for killing someone in a vehicular homicide. Where is the equity?

    July 28, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  138. shahram mohtashem

    AS Mr Goodel said it is a previlage to be playing in NFL and he needs to earn that ,but i dont think they should stop him from trying.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  139. John

    has anyone had Mcdonald's lately? What about steak or chicken? Do you think it comes from a magical meat tree? We kill thousands of animals daily, and not in "humane" ways, just to satisy our hunger. Why is Michael Vick such a bad guy? because its a dog? America is ridiculous. Dogs are not people, just like cows and chickens arent. Torture is wrong, but has anyone taken their kids to the circus lately? we take one thing and call it something else just to make ourselves feel better when really its the same thing. Let Michael Vick play ball.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  140. Susan

    I don't know how Michael Vick can even live with himself, much less play pro football again. Sure let him play, but he can't wear a helmet, pads, or shoes. The dog lovers on the opposing team will have a great time with him! That will be a game to watch!

    July 28, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  141. Dan

    Michael Vick was convicted and served his time. There have been several "high-profile" examples of persons in our society who have commited various crimes, served there time and went back to their orginal profession with little or no backlash. Why should it be different for Mr. Vick.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:02 am |
  142. donna


    July 28, 2009 at 11:02 am |
  143. Monica Tupper

    Michael Vick should put more distance and time between him and his crime before even considering returning to professional sports. Personally, I would rather hear about him in the public supporting more humane education concerning animals and how they should be treated. I wish he would dedicate a portion of his future earnings as an athlete to animal rescues and especially for the medical rehabilitation of animals who have been vistims of abuse. Only then would I begin to see him as rehabilitated...evidence that he finally "gets it" .

    To put it in perspective, we should consider the extreme penalty Pete Rose paid for gambling. His crime pales compared to the horror of Vick's crime. Think about that one. One more comment: I would think less of any team which would hire Michael Vick at this point. I am a New England Patriots fan and I would consider boycotting their games if they hired him. Please! let them be wiser than that. He would also be poison to team morale.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:05 am |
  144. M

    It never fails: celebreties always get special treatment. Not only did he only get 18 months, but now he gets to return to the NFL like nothing happened.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:06 am |
  145. Thomas

    Comparing Martha Stewart's stock/investment crime with Vick's sick profit making off of watching dogs rip each other apart/die...for years, is comparable to comparing Madoff to Hitler. Give me a break.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:06 am |
  146. KJ White

    Michael Vick served an extensive NFL suspension before he went to jail, then he paid his debt to "society" when he served almost 2 years in prison. Since when did we start holding sports players to higher standards than South Carolina governors?

    July 28, 2009 at 11:06 am |
  147. Pamela Pearson

    Vick did not make a "poor decision." He tortured and murdered innocent animals for his own amusement. Is there any level of degeneracy, any point at which sports fans will say, we’ve had enough, this man will not be held up as a hero to our children, become adored and overpaid once again? Is this ancient Rome?

    July 28, 2009 at 11:07 am |
  148. Dog Lover

    I think Michael Vick is a disgusting excuse for a human being. The fact that the NFL is reinstating him disgusts me as well – it's all about the money. Well it should have been all about the precious dogs that he destroyed. And now it should be about the message they are sending to our youth by reinstating him as a possible role model. It's WRONG.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:10 am |
  149. Gretchen Koch

    It made me nauseous when I learned Michael Vick had been reinstated. We will never know how many small animals were used to "train" those dogs and when they didn't kill them then those dogs were electrocuted, hung and tortured.Baseball has been a big part of my family for generations and Michael Vick belongs in the Baseball Hall of Shame. He should never be allowed to play again.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:10 am |
  150. Donald R. Hollingshed

    How are you heidi? He should be reinstated without no restictions. He has did his time. God has forgivin him, so why can't we. Thank you.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:11 am |
  151. Sean

    He paid his dues in jail – yes.

    But what about the Dogs he tortured? Is it so easy to think of them as property and have their memory dismissed after a slap on the wrist? Not so long ago this was an attitude toward a different type of property that was bought and sold in the US – that humane people opposed.

    He should return to football but he should continue to pay to the ASPCA, Humane Society or other causes for animal rescue. Something good must come from such a horrendous act. A reminder to others that at a minimum being cruel to anilmals will hit where it hurts in our society – the wallet.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:11 am |
  152. Mike

    He should not be allowed back in the NFL. He didn’t drive drunk, or buy drugs or gamble on sports or beat his wife, he did something far worse. He tortured and killed animal for entertainment.

    This speaks directly to his character. He didn't make a stupid mistake because he was young or overwhelmed with the money and fame. He enjoyed watching animals suffer. People like him aren't changed by prison.

    This man is a bully and a thug. He had dogs fight for they're lives for fun. He hanged a dog, watch it kick and claw and scream and gag, and he did this for fun. This man does not deserve a second chance.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  153. Vince Di Fruscio

    No. I don't think Vick sould be given a second chance for the actions he took with an illeagel sport. Just think of the reaction our young kids would have.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:16 am |
  154. Lisa F.

    People who are comparing Vick's crimes to those of Martha Stewart or Bernie Madoff are way off base. Vick displayed a shocking brutality in what he did to those animals, pointing to a serious flaw in his character that goes beyond breaking the law. So he "paid his debt to society" by serving jail time and paying stiff fines–for breaking the law.
    However, this does NOT negate the flaw in his character. He should NOT return to the NFL and be a role model for kids. Let him clean out cages at the Human Society instead.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:33 am |
  155. Jon Collins

    Vick means much more to us than people think. I saw the text study by Virginia Tech, Vick went to VT. Vick will forever be a legend at VT. He Literally put VT football on the map. He Literally built their football Field House. He has done more than fund a dog fighting ring. He will always be someones role model. And now he has no choice. I thought we were all Hokies? America needs Michael Vick! Football needs Michael Vick! Virginia Tech needs Michael Vick!!!! 4/16/07 VT R.I.P.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:33 am |
  156. PatCO

    Making a mistake is adding or subtracting wrong in balancing your checkbook – not unspeakable cruelty to dogs! Michael Vick wants to "Make a living?" – fine, he went to college didn't he??? Let him find a job in his major! NOT in the NFL. Someone made a remark that he is not blond – do you really believe that if JOHN ELWAY did such a thing that our family would have cheered our hearts out every game of his career??? NOT. NO Michael Vick in the NFL...

    July 28, 2009 at 11:36 am |
  157. Suzanne

    To answer some points others have brought out:

    –Yes, there are other role models in our children's lives, certainly. I do my best, as a parent, to make my values and my beliefs abundantly clear to my own kids and tell them that I expect them to be persons of honor and integrity. The best way to teach that and to make as lasting of an impression of that as possible, of course, is to live it yourself and point out the inconsistencies you see between your own value system and society.

    –Yes, personally, I *do* think Martha Stewart should be working at Safeway. What she did was wrong, too, and I think the women who "wish they could be just like her" need a reality check, too. Oh, where are you now, Emily Post???

    –And finally, a convicted felony (which Vick is) in the United States often face additional consequences, such as the loss of voting rights, exclusion from certain lines of work and difficulty in finding a job in others; prohibition from obtaining certain licenses; exclusion from purchase and possession of firearms, ammunition and body armour; and ineligibility to run for or be elected to public office. In addition, some states consider a felony conviction to be grounds for an uncontested divorce. All of these losses of privileges, including others noted explicitly by the judge in sentencing, are known as collateral consequences of criminal charges.

    In other words, there are great and many far reaching consequences for "one mistake" that someone makes. But keep in mind. Vick only stopped because he was caught. He committed this particular crime over and over and over again.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:47 am |
  158. J. Dougherty

    The NFL Plays Limbo – How Low Can You Go?

    Michael Vick does not deserve a second chance in the NFL and we are incensed by Commissioner Goodell's decision to reinstate him.

    We are stationed overseas and even from over here, a campaign was launched after Vick's prison release to get him banned from the NFL. Now the aim will be at NFL teams to "pass" on Michael Vick. The unspeakable acts of cruelty he committed shocked people to the core. The growling public will hound him until he's out of sight and mind.

    J. Dougherty
    Stationed in Europe – APO AE 09054

    July 28, 2009 at 11:52 am |
  159. Rhonda

    My family & friends will boycott any sponsor who advertises in any games he may play.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:53 am |
  160. Mary Ellen Muehlenkamp

    If Michael Vick is picked up by an NFL team the parents in the city where that team resides should organize to boycott and bankrupt that franchise. He should NEVER be placed in the position of being a role model to any child in this nation or world. What he did is unforgiveable to all those poor dogs who had to die a very terrible death!

    July 28, 2009 at 11:56 am |
  161. Randle Moore

    I definitely think Michael Vick should’ve been reinstated back into the NFL, in fact, I think he should have been reinstated without conditions. He has paid his debt to society and deserve the respect of returning to what it is that he do for a living to provide for his family and himself, playing football. I also think it was tacky and disrespectful of Roger Goodell to reinstate Vick with conditions. The man has paid for his crime. He has been tried before a jury of his peers, sentenced by a judge, and has served his time. I understand that a code of honor is to be implemented and upheld in the NFL and Roger Goodell should be the first to push for it, but come on, the man has already paid for his crime, as always, leave it up to “Roger Goodell The Great” to punish the man trice for his actions. Come on, who have we become? A nation of people that don’t trust out system to rehabilitate anymore?

    I also think my home team, The Titans should consider signing Michael Vick. I think he would be a wonderful asset to our organization.

    Randle from Nashville

    July 28, 2009 at 11:57 am |
  162. Melissa

    It is my opinion that Michael Vick should have been charged individually for every one animal that was abused and/or died as separate offenses. So, if he had served 18 months for every one animal abused or killed that would be fair justice for every animal’s death. Then a second chance at playing in the NFL would be applicable. However, dog fighting and animal abuse is a big problem in our country and only 18 months and reinstatement back to celebrity status in the NFL is completely wrong for the number of dogs that were abused and died.

    July 28, 2009 at 11:59 am |
  163. Gretchen

    How many helpless small animals were used by Vick to "train" his "team". Those who couldn't make the "team" were hung, electrocuted and tortured and certainly did not survive for a second chance. Put Vick the Football Hall of Shame.

    July 28, 2009 at 12:29 pm |
  164. Philip

    Yes, he should be reinstated. He has served his time. If he is not given the second chance what does this indicate about our correction system, that it doesn't work?

    July 28, 2009 at 12:33 pm |
  165. Rob

    Vick should still be in jail! No one realizes what he did is a precursor to serial killing and thats just a fact! It wasnt enough for vick to get paid well more than he was worth to play football but to run an illegal torturous slaughter house for dogs! Then you have idiots comparing what Vick did to actual cow and pig slaughter houses as the same thing but last I knew most people dont eat dogs! For anyone to compare the two has serious problems! Pete Rose got banned for life for gambling hardly compareable to Vicks crime so why is it good for a white player and not a black player? Pete Rose was actually a very good baseball player and Vick is a want to be, all he can do effectively is run with the ball, he has proven when he throws he blows!

    July 28, 2009 at 12:55 pm |
  166. Bill

    While I agree Vick has done his time and is free. I believe playing in professional sports is a priviledge and not a right. Businesses have the right not to hire person's convicted of previous crimes and I believe for the good of the game, Michael Vick should not be given the priviledge to play in the NFL again. He is a poor role model for our youth and society in general. A message needs to be sent that if you do not adhere to the laws and rules of society that it will not be overlooked regardless of who you are.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:11 pm |
  167. Rob

    For those who say Vick was over punished, get a life! Nothing fair about our judicial system, take OJ Simpson for example, he was aquitted, does anyone really believe he was innocent in killing his ex wife and her lover, only the stupid ones! Vick was jailed and prosecuted because since his enception to the NFL Vick was thumbing his nose at the league and law enforcement as if he had that right! He tortured and killed dogs for no reason so we should feel pitty for this man, for all of you that believe this you have serious problems just like Vick does! We the tax payers provided Vick with an avenue to succeed and he took advantage of it and committed outrageous crimes that should not be forgivin period! I believe most people feel this false sense of pitty for Vick simply because he`s black and it makes them feel worthy to the black communtiy for supporting him!

    July 28, 2009 at 1:14 pm |
  168. jonesey& the once abused Roxie

    Dear Heidi,

    I just have to say, NO MORE NFL for my family (which will be VERY hard- my grandpa had season tickets to the Bears in the 40's, and my husband LIVES for football.)

    We cannot believe that as a society we should reward with idoltry and money a sociopath that hooked jumper cables to dogs ears , connected them to a car battery and then threw them into a pool to watch the writhe in agony and death- yet thats what Michael Vick did and the POOL is STILL at his property (complete with scrach marks)

    Dont our children deserve so much better than this emulate and look up to as heros? The FBI did a ten year study on animal abusers and how often they move onto doing damage to humans, yet the BOYS AND GIRLS CLUB AND THE NFL want this SOCIOPATH in the limelight. Did he volunteer to suit up and let dogs bite him as a way to train attack police dogs, – think of the money he could have raised to help the 400 dogs that are in danger right now of death for no other reason than being seized in a dogfighting sting.

    Oh right Vick's rehabilitated- a stint in jail always makes people better just look at the recividism rate. Lets not forget that the Humane Society and PETA both called for the deaths of all the dogs removed. Yet, the dogs went on to prove that they can thrive with love. They are living reminders of his cruel and evil ways. Hard to change a man whose own father said "we tried to get him to stop, but fighting dogs has always been Mike's thing.." Nice ...

    Everybody said he did his time. Let him slink off to obscurity instead of being hailed and revered by the media and some for profit sports conglomerate. For us NOT ONE MORE DIME will be spent on the NFL apparel or anything connected to these sick people.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  169. michael armstrong sr.

    How many of you out there that have not ever created a crime or made a decision that you could'nt take back who is to judge some one that should be judged themselves Michael Vick learned his lesson the moment he got caught and then his piers judged him as the animal's were as human being's god said let there be man and let man rule all creatures great and small . What Michael Vick done was wrong but the punishment was over stated.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  170. Master Sargeant Larry White

    Yes, Micheal Vick Commited a crime, payed his debt for the crime and has apologized for being involved. He has a right to earn a living. Pro football was his profession.. therefore he should be given a chance to prove that he can still perform at a professional level. I support him 100%


    July 28, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  171. Sonja

    NO, he is pond scum. I second the statement of someone earlier who said he should be tortured in the same manner in which the dogs were. As a football fan I will boycott my home team if they pick him up.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:34 pm |
  172. Charlie Erickson

    How does marital infidelity equate to domestic animal abuse? With that logic, why don’t we just equate a student selling stolen test results with a campus murder? In addition, If those who committed sex crimes against children, who served their time and “paid their dues”, as has been noted so many times in this blog, then why should their lives be further upset by having a national registry of sex offenders? How can anyone so easily say, like some of the comments which have been posted on this blog (though not necessarily on this thread), that Michael Vick has been rehabilitated and will not do it again? Cannot this same logic be applied to murderers and sex offenders?

    Violent crimes are different from non-violent crimes, and must be viewed and treated differently. The psychological nature of the offender is much different.

    Too many people are comparing apples to oranges? The type and nature of the crime, is of the utmost importance.

    Michael Vick was involved in a violent crime. Granted, is wasn’t against humans, but it might have been at some point down the line.

    By the way, if Michael Vick’s crime(s) was against a team’s domestic animal mascot, would he be reinstated?


    July 28, 2009 at 3:50 pm |
  173. Andrea

    While Michael Vick has the legal right to play in the NFL, any team that would hire him should be boycotted by animal lovers and parents who do not see him as a suitable role model for their children. If some team is desperate enough to hire this pariah, it will be their funeral.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  174. David

    I hope he is given a second chance and think that would be the best thing. What he did is wrong, but he has faced the consequences and sought forgiveness in earnest. His case has been subject to full public and media oversight. It's also wrong to hold back someone's potential for extra punitive reasons after they have served their sentence. The NFL is also placing conditions upon his return to football. What are those conditions

    Somehow, though, I think he's going to make good out of all of this and it would wrong to stop that most of all.

    July 28, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  175. Veronica W. Williams

    I feel that Michael Vick should be given another chance; however, he made a great mistake and haven' t most of us. Moveover, so if this is a lesson learned I'm sure that he will not make the same mistake.

    July 28, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  176. robin heller

    Anyone who takes pleasure in seeing a living thing suffer, and who inflicts that suffering, is a psychopath in my estimation. What kind of person is he and who would want him on their team? He should have stayed in prison where he belongs.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  177. IndependentVoter

    I hope Cleveland picks him up. Then he can face the DogPound.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  178. Banker

    I have worked in financial service companies most of my life. If I embezzled money from a bank I would serve my time. But, no bank would ever hire me again, even though I had "paid my debt to society".

    I think that legally, if an NFL team wants to hire him they should be able to. I just would refuse to watch any game he played in and would boycott any sponsors of those televised games.

    Just so you don't think I am picking on Mr. Vick, I also boycott Allen "I don't need to practice with the rest of my team" Iverson after he ran around Philly waving a gun at people looking for his wife who ran away because he neat her.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:32 pm |
  179. Anne

    He's bankrupt and needs money, that's the only reason this piece of trash is sorry.

    Sorry is exactly what he is and any loser team that hires him

    July 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm |
  180. Ronnie

    Yes i think everyone deserve a second chance. And pray that he learned from the mistake that he made. Jesus in the Bible said in Matthew. To the people who wanted to stone the woman who committed adultery. If you never sin cast the first stone. When he lift his head all the people was gone because everyone their had commit some kind of sin. And that's pertains to all of us today. So give him a second chance.

    July 28, 2009 at 7:05 pm |
  181. Fred

    I hope he gets a second chance, Heidi.

    July 29, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  182. Melissa G.

    Absolutely NOT! Has he apologized? Michael Vick needs to spend time helping Animal Shelters – HSUS or ASPCA – need to know he's learned his lesson before I could ever cheer for him again.

    July 29, 2009 at 10:44 am |
  183. David

    First of all, I hate Vick for what he has done and the image that he brings to the game. But saying that, how can you deny him a job if the company is willing to hire him knowing his cimes. I always say that celebs should be treated more like everyday people with their punishments, and maybe he didn't serve long enough but that's not my decision, so on that same note he has served his time and is now a free man. You can not now say that because of crimes before, he can not continue working. And believe me, it hurts to admit this.

    On a side note, I can only hope that his teammates or even opponents, feel that his time has not been served, and give him a little hell on the field. Maybe like in all those football movies where the line lets everyone thru.

    July 29, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  184. Tony

    absolutely. Last time I checked once you did your time it was done. NFL players should be no different, especially when you consider what other players have done. Professional athletes are not role-models for our children, they are just doing a job, and we should not hold them to a higher standard than any one else. yes dog fighting is particularly offensive, but the law is the law. the NFL along with other professional league should make their decisions based on legal and financial reasons only, the courts will handle the rest. By the way they need to let Pete Rose into the hall of fame

    July 29, 2009 at 12:28 pm |
  185. GJ

    I cannot determine if he should be able to play in the NFL. I can determine that I will NOT support ANY team that might pick him up. His "crime" is indicative of a deep illness. Any normal person has a value on life. It has been shown that people who mutilate animals could easily transfer their aggressions to humans. This man has deep problems.

    As far as the "role model", this shows our error. We are crazy if we put football or basketball or hockey players or actors or actresses up as "role models". We need to be responsible to check out a person and really "know" who they are and see heroic actions from them, not the fact that they can run or throw a ball, before we classify them as "role models" or "heroes". The problem is these days, that with all the agencies that "create" a public persona for a high profile person, we REALLY do not know these people. I think what people may really be meaning is, these people make lots of money and we want our children to know that they can make lots of money too. I think we look at the money factor, not the character or good that could and should come from the position.

    July 29, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  186. linda

    YES, he deserves a second chance.......... everyone does something stupid, At one point in their life ,some worse than others,this was his stupid time. I believe he will grow up now. Im sure his light bulb came on after 18 mo. Let him move on and play ball.......................

    July 29, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  187. Tony

    I hope he comes to New England!

    July 30, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  188. db

    Think he earned his right back when he served his jail sentence!

    August 16, 2009 at 9:11 am |
  189. Rita Donahue

    Michael Vick must know alot people involved in this horrific act. Was he willing to give some names?

    August 18, 2009 at 11:14 am |
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