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Brian Banks: The best revenge is success

Atlanta Falcons Rookie Camp Getty Images

The story of Falcons linebacker Brian Banks‘ road from being wrongfully convicted of rape to the NFL is one that’s been told many times and the universal response has been that Banks is easy to root for after losing 10 years of his life before finally having his name cleared.

It’s even easier after listening to him on this week’s edition of Rich Eisen’s podcast. Banks sat down with the NFL Network personality and talked about what it was like to have your life turned upside down because of someone else’s prevarications. It’s a candid and compelling conversation which we’d suggest than anyone interested in Banks’ story check out.

One of the most interesting segments came when Banks discussed how he dealt with his anger at being convicted of a crime he did not commit. Banks admitted to “eating himself alive with negative energy,” but said that he finally came around to a more productive mindset when he realized that those responsible for his plight didn’t care if he wound up destroying himself. Banks decided to channel his energy to football instead.

“A lot of people ask me, why am I not angry? Why am I not disappointed? Why don’t I want revenge? I feel like, you can be angry, but now you channel that energy and what you direct it towards is up to you,” Banks said. “Instead of me sitting on my back with my hands out, asking for somebody to pay for what’s happened to me, I feel like the best revenge is success. So I chose to put on a hardhat and go to work rather than put on a sad face and complain.”

Again, the whole interview is well worth your time and it reinforces the feeling that Falcons fans won’t be close to the only ones rooting for him to achieve that success when camp gets underway.

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25 Responses to “Brian Banks: The best revenge is success”
  1. vexey says: Jun 26, 2013 1:40 PM

    This guy has a much better attitude about this than I would have. He’s been nothing but class ever since the story came out

  2. GenXJay says: Jun 26, 2013 1:41 PM

    My guess is that he channels the anger on the field. Waterboy style.

  3. daburgher says: Jun 26, 2013 1:42 PM

    its people like Brian that remind us all the respect is earned, not given

  4. matt14gg says: Jun 26, 2013 1:43 PM

    I really hope this kid makes it. I also hope someday soon the cameras go away and he can get down to just being another rookie trying to make a team. That is what society owes him and the sooner people leave him alone and stop treating him like a novelty he can focus on just being a football player. I fear that the constant glare of being “that guy” will create obstacles and distractions he doesn’t need. It’s hard enough to make a team as it is.

  5. kingmj4891 says: Jun 26, 2013 1:44 PM

    Hey Banks,

    I like your idea of revenge. Mine didn’t turn out so well.

    Signed,

    Aaron Henandez

  6. commonsensedude says: Jun 26, 2013 1:47 PM

    This guy has incredible character.

  7. trollhammer20 says: Jun 26, 2013 1:48 PM

    He is the anti-Hernandez.

  8. touchdownroddywhite says: Jun 26, 2013 1:48 PM

    This fan certainly wishes him the utmost success in life, on the field and off.

  9. matt14gg says: Jun 26, 2013 1:51 PM

    BTW, the irony of Brian Banks struggling to make a team and have a normal life after having spent 5 years in prison for something he didn’t do, as opposed to someone like Aaron Hernandez, who had it all and deserved none of it, is striking.

    In Banks you have a seemingly good kid who had everything taken from him, and then you have Hernandez who, if reports are true, was a one man crime wave, and yet, due to his extraordinary talent was given a free pass at every turn even though a LOT of people knew he was just a bad dude.

    Life aint fair and that’s just the way it is.

  10. teambringitstrong says: Jun 26, 2013 1:52 PM

    U hear/see that Marie Gil?

  11. b3nz0z says: Jun 26, 2013 1:52 PM

    that guy is a boss

  12. tampamac says: Jun 26, 2013 1:53 PM

    All the best to Brian in the future(except in those 2 games a year against the Bucs). Definitely a class act and much more forgiving than I could ever be.

  13. daburgher says: Jun 26, 2013 1:55 PM

    @matt14gg
    Nail on the head!

  14. drewhill29 says: Jun 26, 2013 1:58 PM

    Most compelling NFL storyline ever. This was probably the best radio interview I’ve ever heard, and the gravity of the reality is just overwhelming.

    I’ve never purchased a jersey of a pro – if Banks makes it, I’ll buy his and wear it proudly to the Atlanta Falcons games.

  15. dbones750 says: Jun 26, 2013 2:10 PM

    This guy is awesome. We all deal with struggles, probably not many of this magnitude, but he is the complete inspiration to man-up when life gives you lemons. I agree with previous posters, since he’s been exonerated, he has shown nothing but class.

    And I will never forget that the Arizona Diamondbacks GM called Banks after hearing his story and immediately offered him a job if he doesn’t make it in the NFL. I’m not a baseball guy, but big ups to the Diamondbacks entire organization, that’s a pure act of kindness for a guy who deserves some good.

  16. nflofficeadmin says: Jun 26, 2013 2:15 PM

    Take note, all the ones already presuming Aaron guilty. #mobmentality

  17. ctiggs says: Jun 26, 2013 2:18 PM

    What does this have to do with Aaron Hernandez.

  18. jkaflagg says: Jun 26, 2013 2:21 PM

    He’s got a chance to make it….the Falcons are very thin at LB, and they also are a team that values good special teamers……would be a great story if he catches on…..

  19. bigbaldpapahawk says: Jun 26, 2013 2:30 PM

    The entire NFL and it’s fans are rooting for this kid. I pray that if he does not make it as a player that maybe he can get on an internship as a coach somewhere and work his way into the league as a coach.

    He has so much that he could teach young players.

  20. bookofelisha10 says: Jun 26, 2013 2:42 PM

    i cant help but like this guy and think it will be a SHAME if he doesnt make a roster when hes 100 more deserving that other people in the NFL thats had numerous chances

  21. kane337 says: Jun 26, 2013 2:57 PM

    If he doesn’t make the 53 man roster he will for sure be put on the practice squad to continue to work on his football craft.

  22. godofwine330 says: Jun 26, 2013 3:30 PM

    Man, to have gone through what he has gone through and have the outlook he has is nothying short of amazing. I am rooting for this guy.

  23. paullyons20 says: Jun 26, 2013 8:03 PM

    I just have to say, wether your a Falcons fan or not, you have to be rooting for this guy. He deserves this opportunity. I really hope he makes it.

  24. abreathofsanity says: Jun 26, 2013 10:01 PM

    As a diehard bucs fan, i would love to see banks be a starter and a great player. One of those stories that comes around once a decade.

  25. raiderapologist says: Jun 26, 2013 10:57 PM

    The best revenge is revenge. Still, I hope he has success.

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