[Los Angeles Times]

Brian Banks, the former Long Beach Polytechnic High School football standout who spent five years in prison before his rape conviction was overturned, has finally earned a spot with an NFL team.

Banks, 27, has signed with the Atlanta Falcons as a linebacker, the team announced Wednesday on its website.

“We are pleased to have Brian join our team,” general manager Thomas Dimitroff said. “We had a chance to work him out last year and have been monitoring his progress since then.

“He has worked extremely hard for this chance over the last year and he has shown us that he is prepared for this opportunity. We are happy that Brian will have a chance to live out his dream of playing in the NFL and we look forward to seeing him on the field.”


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