In the country of second chances, Michael Vick is today's superstar.
The Philadelphia Eagles quarterback fell from grace in 2007 and served jail time for his role in a dogfighting ring, but returned to the NFL in 2009. Now he is back on top with a new endorsement deal with Nike.
Apparently, Nike feels comfortable swooshing (pun intended) Vick's history under the rug.
"We have re-signed Michael Vick as a Nike athlete," Nike said Friday. "Michael acknowledges his past mistakes. We do not condone those actions, but we support the positive changes he has made to better himself off the field."
NFL contracts, and marketing endorsement deals are all about money, of course. And when Vick makes corporations money, Vick is forgiven. Similarly, Nike stuck by Tiger Woods during his infidelity scandal.
Organizations look to fans as a gauge of forgiveness (and money-making potential).Vick's jersey sales are at the top of the heap. He's ranked sixth in NFL jersey sales, behind squeaky-clean New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.