ATLANTA -- On Monday, the Falcons hosted a special retirement ceremony to honor the careers of two of the organization's most iconic players, Roddy White and Michael Vick.
White, the Falcons' all-time leading receiver, will not only be remembered for his special talent on the field, but his infectious smile and charismatic personality made him one of the most popular players to ever put on an Atlanta Falcons uniform.
When asked to reflect on what White meant to him specifically and the organization, Falcons owner and chairman Arthur Blank complimented the way White competed and his connection to the fans.
"Roddy in most ways really represents the notion of winning the Super Bowl on the field and off the field," Blank said of White. "He's played at a Super Bowl level forever; he's been a great player for us. His vocal leadership, his quiet leadership, his respect among the players. The second part of it is his connection to the fans, which is the Super Bowl of life, if you will. He's always had a great relationship with our fans. You saw the response he got when we retired the Georgia Dome, it's incredible. We love Roddy, he'll be a part of our family forever."
In a message to the fans who supported him through his illustrious career, White had the following to say:
"Every Sunday, I gave them everything I had, 100 percent," White said. "I just want to tell them I love them and how much I appreciate them. It was 11 great years, a lot of fun."
Vick, Atlanta's star quarterback for six seasons, quickly transcended the way the game would be played at the quarterback position.
Not only could Vick make plays in the pocket, his ability to make plays with his feet made him a matchup nightmare for defenses. Vick is the only quarterback in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in single season.
"He became the face of the franchise," Blank said of Vick. "Obviously when you turned on ESPN on Monday morning, win or loss you were going to see a whole lot of highlights from Michael. Michael had the ability to take a game under his wing and really control it. He was a magnificent player with huge talent. He made some bad choices, he paid his price for those choices. The great part of that story, like the great part of any story where there is human redemption involved is that Michael has worked extraordinarily hard in giving back to the community in so many different ways. There's no better way for Michael to redeem himself and make a difference in the lives of other people by being a cheerleader for that message and sharing that message with young folks."
Vick opened up about what the Falcons' organization means to him and the opportunity to be recognized for his career in Atlanta – something he views as a life fulfillment.
"There's nothing more than I need in regards to football and the game," Vick said. "I played for a lot of great organizations, [but] this one right here was dear to my heart. This was a team that I really chased a championship with."