Throughout our entire lives we make mistakes. No person is void of making mistakes and in most scenarios it can be said that mistakes are great learning tools, assuming the person making the mistake uses the experience to grow as a person.
In sports we have seen numerous second chances, particularly in the NFL. You don’t have to look far to see one that has taken shape in Philadelphia with quarterback Michael Vick. Vick is a prime example of someone learning from a mistake and using the experience to better themselves as a person. Vick was indicted in 2007 for operating a dog-fighting ring and breeding pitbulls solely for dog fighting. Vick received punishment, did his time and made his way back to the NFL. He currently actively works with charitable organizations that protect animals from abuse.
Vick’s journey is proof positive that we are allotted second chances in life and sometimes in our profession. But more often than not it’s those who truly learn from those mistakes that find lasting success.
Back in January 2010 reports surfaced involving Florida Gators’ cornerback Wondy Pierre-Louis who was accused of domestic abuse. Pierre-Louis was originally charged with domestic battery and was eventually arrested and held on five felony counts related to domestic abuse. He later was charged with two misdemeanor counts of criminal mischief.
As the processed developed, the supposed victim Starlett Lazenberry would tell the courts; “I do not fear for my life or anything like that. He’s not a danger to anyone. He couldn’t hurt a frog.” She would add that she had attempted to contact the Gainesville Police Department concerning what she said are “inaccuracies” in their police report but said “I’m still waiting on a (return) phone call.” Lazenberry later asked that the charges against Pierre-Louis be dropped.
Pierre-Louis’ charges were reduced to damaging a door and cell phone in his then-girlfriend’s (the accuser) apartment. Pierre-Louis pled guilty to both charges and received a sentence of one year of probation from the judge.
An unfortunate situation that has contributed to Pierre-Louis’ tough road to land an NFL roster spot. Nonetheless, Pierre-Louis does not look back at the event with anger or contempt, in fact Pierre-Louis demonstrates the type of resolve and peace that is somewhat admirable:
“It was a situation that happened and things got a little blown out of proportion with me and the other party. We both overreacted, but we learn from it and move on.“
“I kept calling, and nobody was picking up” Pierre-Louis told the Palm Beach Post’s Ben Volin. “I have family in America that I called, and they said they couldn’t get anyone. I was just sitting there trying to call everybody.”A native of Port-au-Prince which was ground zero for the earthquake, Pierre-Louis endured a terrifying waiting process to find out if his family back home was safe or not. “The house [where I grew up in] collapsed, but everybody made it out, there’s nothing left. I’ve been trying to find out what I can do. I’m going to send money down there.”
I believe that’s fair, because when something happens to somebody that’s being evaluated, You obviously cant just overlook the situation. But I keep my head up and have a positive mind and take everything as it come day by day.It was a situation that was blown out of proportion. All the charges was dropped. I put that behind me and I’m ready to move forward with my football Career.
I have been approached by a couple UFL, CFL and AFL team during this process. And I’m very open minded when it come to football because of my passion for the game. At the end of the day I will go with the best opportunity that’s being presented.I been back home in Naples training at Velocity Sport with Derek Touchette. The same trainer that trained guys like Hakeem Nicks with the Giants, Phil Taylor with the Cleveland Browns and Braylon Edwards with the San Francisco 49ers. I have been training hard. I feel like I’m in my the best shape I’ve ever been in.
I like to let all the teams know, I played at a big time program in a big time conference. I’m a tall athletic corner. I’m hungry. I’m ready to show everyone in the NFL what I’m capable of.
I believe Tebow is an amazing football player with a lot of heart that really cares about his team. I can’t wait to watch him play next year. But I’m more looking to play against him (laughs)