There were two numbers that came out this week that seem to indicate that the country has forgiven Michael Vick. Not only have they forgiven him, but they appear to actually like the guy...
The first number is 25.7 million. That's how many people watched the Eagles vs Cowboys game Sunday night and it's also the highest rated Sunday Night Football game ever. Now you might say, that has something to do with the Cowboys being in the game because they're always a good ratings draw. That's true, but when you look at the kind of ratings the Eagles have drawn this year, it becomes apparent that they're the draw this time around.
Their Sunday night game against the Giants was the highest rated Sunday night game in 12 years. Their game against the Bears was the highest rated NFL game of the season on any network. Their early November matchup with the Colts was the highest rated regular season game on CBS in three years and was at that point the highest rated TV program in America since the start of the NFL season. That game eclipsed the previous highest rated TV program in 2010 which was… Eagles vs Packers on opening day.
Other than the opening day game against the Packers, Vick started every one of those games and he's really the major difference between this year's Eagles team and last year's which wasn't out breaking ratings records every week.
The other number is 981,687. That's how many pro bowl votes Michael Vick has gotten so far, he leads the NFL in that category. He has over 34,000 more votes than second place Tom Brady. If pro bowl voting is just one big popularity contest, then Michael Vick, who everyone apparently hates, is winning it.
So people are tuning in record numbers to watch Vick, they're casting more pro bowl votes for him than anyone else... Is it not fair to draw some assumptions from this? There's not doubt that he's always going to have his detractors and that's certainly their prerogative... but there really seems to be a lot fewer of them then I remember. His play has turned a lot of people around and his general demeanor and attitude has converted others. People love a comeback story and this is the best one the NFL has going right now.