Michael Vick, a former star NFL quarterback most known for his tenures with the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles, is coming out of retirement to play in the startup Fan Controlled League, according to a report by Reuters. Vick, 41, will make his debut in the league on May 28 for a team not yet known.
According to the report, Vick’s comeback was prompted by the success of personal friend and Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver Terrell Owens, who signed with the league earlier this year. Vick joins Owens among notable former NFL players participating in the Fan Controlled League, a condensed 7-on-7 style version of football that takes place on a 50-yard field and allows fans to call plays.
Playing in the Fan Controlled League will mark Vick’s first football action in five years, when he participated in a flag football league shortly after he announced his retirement from the NFL in February of 2017. Vick’s last NFL action came in 2015, when he played in five games and started three as a backup to Ben Roethlisberger on the Pittsburgh Steelers.
In his prime, Vick was one of the most prolific quarterbacks of the 2000s, and he is widely regarded as one of the greatest dual-threat quarterbacks in league history. The No. 1 overall pick by the Atlanta Falcons in the 2001 NFL Draft, Vick’s rare athleticism made him a dangerous rushing threat to go with a powerful arm, leading to him making three Pro Bowls with the Falcons while leading his team on two playoff runs, an NFC South title, and to an appearance in the NFC Championship Game. After his career was interrupted by his serving a prison sentence for his involvement in a dog-fighting ring, Vick returned to the NFL with the Eagles and became the league’s Comeback Player of the Year and played in his final Pro Bowl in 2010.
Since the end of his football career, Vick has dabbled in experimental and startup leagues as both a player and as a coach. Vick played in the American Flag Football League, and then served as a consultant for the Atlanta Legends of the short-lived Alliance of American Football.