We’re guessing the title above either made you shout an expletive or emit a compassionate sigh. Michael Vick is what we call a polarizing figure, and the public views him as either a heartless torturer of innocent animals or a man who has paid his dues to society and earned the right to move on in life.
As PR professionals, we won’t judge Vick here, but we will break down his relationship with the public because, like it or not, Michael Vick is a public relations textbook still in the making. Here’s the story:
Michael Vick, from Hampton Roads, Virginia, was the electric quarterback for Virginia Tech before being selected as the number one pick in the 2001 NFL draft by the Atlanta Falcons. Vick had undeniable talent, awe-inspiring athleticism…and tens of millions of dollars to show for his gifts before playing a single professional down. This was a 30 for 30 script long before the show ever aired on ESPN.
A series of poor financial and personal decisions, alongside a smug attitude toward his quarterbacking duties somehow culminated in an FBI investigation, lies to the NFL commissioner and, ultimately, jail time for running a dog fighting ring with “friends” near his hometown. This wasn’t the usual cocaine and hookers–this was brutality and Fido. The public wanted blood. Vick went to jail, and most thought the story would end there, as any aspirations of a comeback seemed doomed by both human reality and spiritual karma. Read more