Receiver Plaxico Burress, a hero but not the MVP of Super Bowl XLII, exits prison on Monday. His agent believes the NFL will welcome him back with open arms.
After, of course, the lockout ends.
“Many teams want him,” agent Drew Rosenhaus told the Associated Press via e-mail. “He will be a top free agent. He is healthy and ready to go. He will be signed shortly after the lockout ends.”
Burress received a two-year sentence in September 2009, ten months after his loaded handgun discharged in a Manhattan nightclub, firing a bullet through his leg. He eventually pleaded guilty to felony charges, given the overwhelming strength of the prosecution’s case against him.
That said, many believe Burress got a raw deal. Including Burress.
“I don’t think that he will ever believe that the punishment fit the crime,” his lawyer, Peter M. Frankel told the Associated Press.
It’s hard not to agree with Burress. If the bullet had struck someone else, then a lengthy prison stay easily would have been justified. But with New York making the philosophical decision that matters of life and death as a result of a bullet fired accidentally (or intentionally) from a handgun shouldn’t be left to chance and in light of the strong message of deterrence the Plaxico Burress prosecution and imprisonment sent to anyone else who may be tempted to carry a loaded weapon without a permit in and around Manhattan, the outcome was in many ways unavoidable.