Originally posted on Fox Sports South  |  By JOHN MANASSO  |  Last updated 8/30/13
ATLANTA The Falcons will release long shot linebacker Brian Banks, who spent more than five years in a prison for a crime of which he was falsely accused and later exonerated, according to FOXs Jay Glazer. Final cuts down to the 53-man roster are due by Saturday at 6 p.m. Eastern. However, Glazer also tweeted that Falcons owner Arthur Blank was so impressed with Banks that Blank and his partners are actually trying to place him in a career opportunity in Atlanta around the team. While its possible that that position could be in the form of being signed to the teams practice squad a move that could not come until Sunday it sounds more like a position in community relations. Blank also runs a family foundation which supports various causes and he tightly integrates the foundation with the Falcons. As a result, its also possible that Blank could create a position for Banks with the foundation. Banks himself does nonprofit work relating to the California Innocence Project, which helped to do the legal work to get him released from prison. The work is close to Banks heart for obvious reasons. Theres just so much that I want to do in life, Banks said last week. Part of that is it to use my story and use my experience to give back to other people. So thats why I never let my experiences go. I continuously talk about them, I continuously address the things I went through in life because, for one, wrongful convictions need to be addressed in America and then, two, Ive noticed that people have taken on to my story and found inspiration from it and so I want to continue to be that vessel for people to continue to push forward. Banks, 28, was at a clear disadvantage in trying to make the team, one that he and the coaches readily acknowledged. He had not played football in 10 years not even playing college football as his legal issues prevented him from going to USC on a scholarship that was offered to him coming out of high school. Nonetheless, the way he handles himself with dignity and speaks about his situation in such an articulate manner without a hint of bitterness has impressed fans, the media, players and coaches alike something linebackers coach Glenn Pires acknowledged to FoxSportsSouth.com last week. Glazer tweeted that Banks gave an emotional speech following the Falcons final preseason game on Thursday, a 20-16 loss to Jacksonville at the Georgia Dome. Brian gave a speech last night to the team that had some vets on the verge of tears, about appreciating every second on that field, Glazer tweeted. After the game, Banks appeared tired but content. He said he had no regrets about his effort, which included limited playing time in the preseason as two undrafted rookie linebackers came out of nowhere to impress and appear poised to land spots on the active roster. Banks totaled four tackles in the preseason, including two on Thursday. I know I worked as hard as I can throughout training camp, offseason, (offseason team activities), minicamp, so whatever the coaches have in mind and what they want to do to produce a winning team, thats up to them, Banks told FOXSportsSouth.com. I asked for the opportunity and I was given the opportunity. How ever things go Im OK with it. Whatever it might be, it seems as if Banks has a bright future ahead of him.
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