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Brian Banks 'deserves' NFL shot, Mike Shanahan says

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We're continuing to follow the story of Brian Banks, the former blue-chip college prospect who's attempting to resurrect his dreams of an NFL career after being exonerated of a crime that put him behind bars for more than five years.

We learned earlier this week that the Washington Redskins were one of several NFL teams interested in giving Banks a tryout. On Thursday, Redskins coach Mike Shanahan explained the decision to take a look at Banks.

"I called Brian Banks up. I talked to him on the phone," Shanahan told reporters. "I think when somebody goes through the situation that he went through, he deserves an opportunity to try out for somebody. Considering what he went through, just reading about -- I don't know him personally -- I called him up and said, 'We'd love to have you out.'

"We're going to have him out sometime next week, and then he'll work out and we'll see what type of shape he's in," Shanahan went on. "This kid deserves a chance."

Banks already has a workout scheduled with the Seattle Seahawks on June 7, the final day of that team's organized team activities. Seahawks coach Pete Carroll heavily recruited Banks when Carroll was coaching at USC and Banks was a star linebacker at Long Beach Poly High School.

The 6-foot-2, 245-pound Banks told ESPN.com's Rick Reilly he has been training since October.

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