Michael Vick was set to be honored at the 2020 NFL Pro Bowl as one of four ‘Legends Captains’ joining Darrell Green, Terrell Davis, and Bruce Smith until the decision fell under intense criticism by fans and animal rights supporters.
After the news was announced, a petition was created to try and get the NFL to find a replacement for the former animal abuser, which racked up a whopping 550,000 signatures.
“To honor a man who had zero regard for animals is unacceptable,” the Change.org petition states.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell addressed the controversy Wednesday during a press conference:
“Over the last, what is it, nine years or so, we have supported Michael in his, what I think his recognition of the mistake he made,” Goodell said. “He’s paid a heavy price for that. He’s been accountable for it. He’s worked aggressively with the Humane Society and other institutions to deal with animal rights and to make sure people don’t make the same mistake he made, and I admire that.”
Vick was of course indicted on animal cruelty charges after it was uncovered that he was running an inhumane dog fighting operation out o his Atlanta home in 2007.
The former QB ended up serving 18 months of his 23-month sentence in federal prison.