Did anyone believe at the start of the season that Michael Vick would lead the NFL in Pro Bowl voting?
If you did, quit your day job and play the lottery. Or become a prognosticator. Or book a one-way ticket to Vegas (not that I condone such behavior).
A year and a half after he was released from prison, Vick’s redemption continues. NFL Nation is showing they’re believing in his play on the field and willing to forgive Vick’s past mistakes off of it, vaulting him nearly 39,000 votes ahead of Peyton Manning in the second round of balloting released by the league.
Top 10 vote-getters in fan voting:
1. Michael Vick, Eagles: 729,838
2. Peyton Manning, Colts: 691,146
3. Tom Brady, Patriots: 623,074
4. Adrian Peterson, Vikings: 591,598
5. Aaron Rodgers, Packers: 547,340
6. Philip Rivers, Chargers: 503,282
7. Drew Brees, Saints: 498,079
8. Arian Foster, Texans: 414,033
9. Antonio Gates, Chargers: 375,666
10. Chris Johnson, Titans: 363,908
Some other interesting notes to be pulled from the latest vote totals:
- If fan voting — which counts for 1/3 of the total vote — is any indication, two players having break out seasons at the same position will be making the trip to Hawaii. Arian Foster (414,033) leads Chris Johnson (363,908) among AFC running backs, followed closely by Peyton Hillis (338,839).
- Fans aren’t convinced Darrelle Revis is the best cornerback in football. Revis (192,568) trails Nnamdi Asomugha (197,746) as the top vote-getter among AFC cornerbacks.
- Terrell Owens, who hasn’t been to the Pro Bowl since 2007, is currently second among AFC receivers in fan voting, trailing only Andre Johnson.
- No dip in popularity among fans for Steelers OLB James Harrison, who has been fined on four separate occasions for illegal hits. Harrison leads his position and has almost twice as many votes (236,374) than the amount he’s paid in fines ($125,000) this season.
- The only rookie to lead his position group is Lions DT Ndamukong Suh (235,697), who has sizeable lead over B.J. Raji of the Packers (118,669).
Balloting concludes Monday, Dec. 20 and the teams will be announced at 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Dec. 28 on a special “NFL Total Access 2011 Pro Bowl Selection Show” on NFL Network.