Originally written on Fox Sports South  |  Last updated 4/3/13
ATLANTA (AP) -- Brian Banks said signing with the Atlanta Falcons is his second-biggest accomplishment. The biggest was Banks' exoneration of rape charges one year ago. Banks, 27, signed with the Falcons on Wednesday, giving him an opportunity he said he did not believe would be possible when he spent five years in prison and five years on probation following his conviction of rape and kidnapping charges a decade ago. "I felt at the time in order for me to exit prison with a sane mind and be able to just function as a person I had to let go of certain dreams and goals I once held in life, football being one of them," Banks said. Banks said he "couldn't have asked for a better place to be" than with the Falcons. "I can't believe this is happening," he said. "It's surreal." Banks was a 16-year-old junior and had made a verbal commitment to sign with Southern Cal when a Long Beach Poly high school classmate accused him of the rape. The woman recanted her claim and offered to hel...
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