The Atlanta Falcons plan to thank Michael Vick and Roddy White for their contributions in a special ceremony
Although former Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Michael Vick never got his one-day contract to retire as part of the team, he will be honored by the franchise that drafted him first overall back in 2001. The Falcons will hold a retirement press conference for Vick, as well as his former teammate wide receiver Roddy White.
“We consider all former Falcons to be Falcons for life, and part of our family,” team owner Arthur Blank said via the Atlanta Falcons official website. “Both men have made a huge impact on my family, our franchise and this city and we are thrilled to be able to honor both Roddy and Michael’s wishes to retire as Falcons, and celebrate their careers.”
While Blank said no contract is needed for these guys to be honored, it is interesting. Teams often sign players to a one-day deal for them to officially retire as a member of the franchise they spent most their career with. Really, that’s a silly formality as it isn’t like the player really returns. Instead they sign a piece of paper and then hold a press conference.
Arthur Blank instead saved the piece of paper and will still sit down with reporters and thank the two iconic players on June 12.
Vick was the first ever African-American quarterback to go number one overall in the NFL and the Falcons traded up for the honor of having him. He quickly became the most exciting player in the league but sadly left Atlanta in controversy as he spent time in prison for owning an illegal dog fighting ring. He returned to the league and was successful with the Philadelphia Eagles before stints with the New York Jets and Pittsburgh Steelers as a backup.
During his time with the Falcons Vick completed 53.8 percent of his passes for 11,505 yards with 71 touchdowns against 52 picks. He also was the first ever quarterback to rush for over 1,000-yards in a single season, which he did in his last year with the team.
White was a late-first round pick in 2005 that played his whole career with the Falcons. After leaving the team in 2015, he spent all of 2016 out of the NFL before deciding he was done. White had 808 career receptions for 10,863 yards and 63 touchdowns.