Dungy, who coached the Colts to the Super Bowl in 2007, took a similar approach with Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick after he served a 21-month sentence for bankrolling a dogfighting ring.
After a full-year of re-establishment, Vick took over the Eagles starting job in 2010 and was named the AP’s NFL Comeback Player of the Year.
“I hope I can pass on some of the same things I passed on to Michael,” Dungy told Sports Illustrated.
The major difference between Burress and Vick is their age. Vick was 29 when he was released, while Burress will turn 34 when he is freed on June 6. The one-year adjustment period that Vick endured might be the minimum for any player, raising serious questions to whether Burress could produce at an older age.
Dungy might help Burress get his life back on track following a 20-month sentence for weapons charges. But as far as the football field goes, it’s hard to guess if he’s got enough left in the tank to contribute.