Celebrating the Courage of Michael Vick

Posted by Patrick James

s-MICHAEL-VICK-ED-BLOCK-COURAGE-AWARD-largeFrom the "seriously?" department: Last night, the NFL bestowed the Ed Block Courage Award on 32 players-each team nominates a player-including a "humbled" Michael Vick. Vick's Philadelphia Eagles teammates unanimously selected him for the award, which, according to the Huffington Post, "is presented to players who exemplify commitment to the principles of sportsmanship and courage."Vick, you'll remember, is the former star quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons who spent 18 months incarcerated in federal prison after being convicted in 2007 for his role in a dog-fighting ring. You'll also remember that, in Vick's words, "Chickens have an uncanny ability to think and are very agile. They are very athletic to me."He returned to the NFL last year amid much controversy. Since then, he's put together some unremarkable (but not bad) numbers backing up Donavon McNabb while working to repair his public image by volunteering with the Humane Society and holding speaking engagements to steer other young men away from dog-fighting and animal abuse. Great job.I'm all for forgiveness. And it's great that he's on the straight and narrow now. And I'm even glad that after serving his time he got the chance (based on his merits as an athlete) to play ball again (yay, America). But can't we wait at least a little while longer before we turn him into a victim who overcame tremendous odds?  Does he really need an award? Isn't this a little bananas?