- Dan Graziano, ESPN Staff Writer
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Michael Vick's on-field performance with the Philadelphia Eagles has ranged wildly, from the staggering brilliance of 2010 to the turnover-infested frustration of 2012, with various injuries along the way. We spend a lot of time on here writing about Vick the football player, his exceptional talent and his maddening flaws. But one thing that has been consistent since Vick got out of prison in 2009 and signed with the Eagles has been his performance as a citizen off the field. The things he did that landed him in prison were well-documented and unconscionable, but since his release he truly has conducted himself as a man determined to make a positive contribution to his community.
The latest example of this found Vick on Thursday being presented with the key to Atlantic City by Mayor Lorenzo Langford for the work he did to support that community in the wake of Hurricane Sandy last year:
“Michael Vick is caring and compassionate enough to reach out to our city when we were at our lowest point during the immediate aftermath of Super Storm Sandy,” said Mayor Langford. “Twelve hours after a nationally televised Monday Night Football game, he was lifting the spirits of our residents confined to shelters with his generosity, particularly our young people.
“And now, here he is again, helping us to spread the message that Atlantic City is open for business and ready for the summer season, all while continuing to encourage our youth to make positive contributions to the community.”
This is a big thing in New Jersey right now -- this campaign to let everyone know the storm-ravaged shore communities are up and running and ready for the summer season that keeps the businesses there in existence. It's important to the local economy that people know they can still go and vacation there this summer. The work by Vick to which the mayor referred is real and consistent with the community work Vick has been doing around Philadelphia and South Jersey since he started living and working there. It deserves to be recognized and admired.