Michael Vick has been the villain, and now he wants to be the hero.
Vick is an interesting guy when you look at him from a pure media standpoint. Vick has been the hero, the villain, and now, he is trying to be the hero again.
As far as character arcs go, it would be an interesting one to see play out over several seasons of a TV show.
In a way, the NFL is a TV show, except the "reality" is hard to manufacture. Vick was a star quarterback who had a dark side that ruined his career and sent him to jail.
Since leaving jail on dogfighting charges, Vick has embarked on a crusade to rebuild his image and show the public he has paid for his crimes and learned from his mistakes.
Then on Monday, Pittsburgh Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall made some controversial Tweets about Osama bin Laden and the Sept. 11 attacks. When asked about the same topic, Vick did not hesitate to endorse the United States and the military.
The issue is not what they said, it is the thought process behind it. Mendenhall may deliberately have made controversial remarks for reasons we can not fathom and could be laughing at us right now.
Vick could be quietly upset about things, but has no intention of taking any view other than the popular one for all we know.
To be absolutely clear, this is not about politics or what you think about the events of the past week. This is about how Michael Vick has begun to take control of his public image and bring people back to his side.
The recent battle for the cover of Madden 2012 came down to Vick and Peyton HIllis. With the spectre of dogfighting still hanging over Vick, Hillis became the easy victor.
It is not hard to see EA Sports not being comfortable with Vick being their cover boy at this point, which gets us back to the core argument. Vick has to keep winning PR battles as much as he needs to keep winning games.
Vick is the poster child for how to do everything right once you get out of jail on felony dogfighting charges. Vick really has not made one misstep in his actions or his statements.
One belief many Americans have is that everyone deserves a second chance. Vick has made the most of his second chance, and many people are responding to it.
Not everyone will flock to Vick's side, as the dogfighting charges are something many people never will forgive him for. That is their right.
One thing I hope we all can agree on, though, is that Vick does look and act like a changed person. It is important he not stray from the road he is on.