Michael Vick got good news Thursday, learning that he will be eligible for full NFL reinstatement on the third game of the season. Commissioner Roger Goodell had previously made Vick conditionally eligible, saying he could play in the last two games of the preseason.
Some had speculated that he would not officially be reinstated until the sixth game of the season. Officials with his new squad, the Philadelphia Eagles, were concerned because Vick, whom they acquired for $6.8 million over the next two years, is not able to practice until he has been fully reinstated.
Vick will be eligible on Sept. 27, when the Kansas Chiefs visit Philadelphia.
Vick’s return to the NFL, following an 18th-month prison stint for a dogfighting conviction, was a controversial one. Many critics argued that the atrocity of his crimes against animals should preclude him from returning to such a high-profile, high-paying occupation. Others, however, said that Vick had paid his debt to society and should not be further penalized by the league.
"I've been doing everything I could, just trying to do all the right things and make sure I just stay on course," Vick said. "I'm happy with the decision.
Meanwhile, Vick made an appearance in Philly’s 38-27 loss to the New York Jets on Thursday. He ran for a two-yard touchdown, but was sacked four times, lost a fumble and threw an interception.