What a meteoric rise from the ashes for Michael Vick.
Just a year and a half after his release from prison, the Eagles QB leads the fan voting for the Pro Bowl, the NFL said on Wednesday. Vick, who had 729,838 votes as of the announcement, led second-place Peyton Manning by almost 39,000 votes.
"I appreciate my fans, man," Vick said yesterday. "Couldn't do it without them. Been very supportive over the last three years. What more can you ask for?
"I think it's just a credit to everything I've tried to accomplish on and off the field, just working as hard as I can to change things around, be a part of the solution and not the problem," Vick continued. "I changed my life and it just goes to show anybody can do it. It's an unfortunate situation, the things that happened, I wish I could go back and change it all. I wish I could take it all back. The only thing I can do is move forward."
Vick has playing in only nine of his team's 12 games, but is second in the NFL in passer rating at 105.7, behind only Tom Brady (109.5). He's completed a career-high 63.8 percent of his passes, thrown 15 touchdowns and only two interceptions (an NFL low for a starting QB).
He's also rushed for 467 yards and six TDs for the 8-4 Eagles, who are second in the league in points per game at 28.7.
Online voting for the Pro Bowl ends Dec. 20. The teams are chosen by a combination vote from fans, players and coaches.
Said Vick: "It's a great honor, a great position to be in right now, because I haven't made the Pro Bowl yet, but it's a credit to my coaches, a credit to my teammates ... I can't do it without my team, I can't do it without my teammates, I can't do it without the offensive line ... can't do it without them. I'm just thankful to have these guys in my life, these coaches in my life."