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Michael Vick's Release Date Arrives, as Does Mass Speculation on Fate

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By Javier Lavagnino, Esq. on May 20, 2009 12:37 PM

So Michael Vick got released from prison, according to The League at the Washington Post, and is going to home confinement to complete the last two months of his sentence while doing some construction work. At this point, the only thing there is for sure, is an abundance of speculation on where Vick's football career is going to go, and whether it should even go anywhere for that matter. But here's some of what Vick faces ahead on the road to getting back on the NFL playing field.

The first hurdle Vick has to tackle would obviously be getting reinstated to the NFL. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is ultimately the decision-maker as far as that goes, and he's appeared to indicate that Vick needs to "demonstrate genuine remorse to be reinstated". If and when Goodell makes the decision, assuming it is in Vick's favor, then the issue will be whether any NFL teams want to bring him on board. At this point, "baggage" might not be the right term for what Vick is towing along, perhaps cargo would be more appropriate.

Setting aside the athletic and physical effects of having an extended stint in prison and being off the field for so long, a team bringing Vick on would surely face intensely magnified media attention and a pretty substantial amount of distractions. A team would also have to ask whether it would even be worth the risk of alienating an undetermined amount of fans by bringing on Vick. For some people, the stigma of Vick's dog fighting charges and the gruesome allegations might simply not fade away, after all, even a judge ordered that Vick never own a dog again.

Of course, some suggest that the issues Vick now faces are those faced by released convicts elsewhere (on a much more public scale) and that their reintegration into society can be done successfully given enough time and work.

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