By Mark Newman
The Atlanta Legends.
Think of Hank Aaron, Bobby Jones, Bill Elliott, Alan Jackson, Gladys Knight, Herschel Walker, Michael Johnson, Martin Luther King Jr., Jimmy Carter, Stone Mountain, Dominique Wilkins, Ty Cobb, Michael Vick, Ted Turner, Uga, peanuts, pecans, peaches, sweet tea and Vidalia onions.
Think of Muhammad Ali lighting the 1996 Olympic flame and touching the hearts of everyone around the world while shining a light on Georgia, or a piano player from Albany named Ray Charles who had everyone singing about moonlight through the pines.
Introducing the Atlanta Legends, one of eight new teams in The Alliance of American Football. The Legends will be ready to roll next February, the weekend immediately following the Super Bowl in – you guessed it, Atlanta. In a salute to so much hallowed history, the team is all in on its new name, announced Thursday morning.
“We certainly feel Legends is an appropriate nickname for a team associated with Atlanta — a city where legends are quite literally made,” said David Livingston, President of the Atlanta Legends. “So many great personalities, stories and interesting slices of Americana have come out of Atlanta over the years with one of the richest histories in the country. The name symbolizes a larger-than-life identity and in many ways, our players and fans will embody that same passion each week in purple, gold and white.”
This is where Legends are made, where larger-than-life greatness happens. The name goes beyond sports. The name covers Georgia as a whole. Its people persevere, they go big. Whether it’s the agriculture, the majestic Appalachian Mountains, the jaw-dropping Atlantic coast or the importance in the Civil Rights movement, there is no disputing Atlanta’s connections to Legends of all kinds.
Look no farther than the team’s coaching staff. Vick is the Legends’ offensive coordinator under head coach Brad Childress.
“We have one of the greatest legends in the history of professional football in our offensive coordinator, Michael Vick,” Livingston said. “Along with the head coach, Brad Childress, a storied coach who has spent half his life shaping young men in the NFL, they are going to put together a roster and a program that will present one of the most entertaining football shows in a city that is hungry for more football. We want to meet that expectation every single game.”
This is the way of the Atlanta Legends. Greatness goes through here.