NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence initially pressed for Plaxico Burress to go to prison on a weapon possession charge after he accidentally shot himself in the leg in 2008.

On Monday night, the Jets wide receiver spoke at the organization’s annual fundraiser in Manhattan. The Brady Center also honored Colin Goddard, a survivor who was shot four times at Virginia Tech.

Burress said that as his life as an NFL star was unraveling, he thought: “Let what happened to me serve a higher purpose.”

He later contacted the Brady Center, which was thrilled to welcome him as an ally in trying to teach about the stark consequences of carrying guns.

“If I can save one life, keep one kid from having a firearm, then I think the higher purpose was served,” Burress told the audience, which gave him a hearty ovation at the end of his speech.

A Super Bowl star with the Giants, Burress spent nearly two years in prison. He signed with the Jets after getting out over the summer and had a breakout game Sunday, tying a career high with three touchdown catches in a 27-21 win over the San Diego Chargers.

At a news conference before his speech, Burress said that when he contemplated what he would have done if he ever found himself needing to use that gun, he realized how foolish it was to carry one.

“When I look back at it, I say if I was to get into a situation where I had to use my firearm, would I actually pull it and use it — return fire, or shoot? Just the thought of that, it just gives you goose bumps to think about it,” said Burress. “It was a false sense of security because I couldn’t see myself actually pulling the trigger.”

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (2)
  1. Nanjing03 says:

    Accidently shot himself in the leg? Yeah, I guess Burress is one of those rare arguments favored by the Brady Campaign that says that human beings are total idiots and not to be armed. He probably couldn’t avoid getting pointed in the direction of an Eddie Eagle safety course if he had asked the NRA if he could speak for them. Oh well, if Burress is the best that Brady can get …

  2. Taz Delaney says:

    plaxico had 2 years of his great career taken from him for this foolishness. now while it must be admitted that it was right darned stupid…… i took note that in a very indiscrete and inappropriate manner, mayor billionaire made a vendetta out of the affair and called for him to get the maximum time in prison. but as is the norm in new york city, alabama, these days… at that same time, a wall street CEO went a little nuts and waved a pistol around his offices, shot out a couple of windows and threw a vase. guess what? no charges convicted!

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