Michael Vick, who returned to the NFL in 2009 after a two-year prison sentence for running a dogfighting ring, was the second-biggest winner (by percentage) in the first round of EA Sports' fan-voted playoff for the Madden NFL 12 cover.
To no one's surprise, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has demanded Vick's removal from the contest. EA Sports president Peter Moore (pictured) says nothing doing.
"I'm not here to comment on what he did," Moore told the World Congress of Sports conference yesterday. "I personally believe, and this is personal commentary right now, that Michael served his time. He's had a tremendous season."
Moore said EA Sports has received letters from PETA asking for Vick's removal. Moore justified Vick's candidacy on his standout 2010 season, in which the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback led his team to the playoffs, was named the NFL's Comeback Player of the Year and finished second in the league's MVP voting.
In the voting, Vick crushed his first-round opponent, the Dallas Cowboys' DeMarcus Ware, by 76 to 24 percent. Only Atlanta's Matt Ryan, with 89 percent, won a higher percentage of votes in the first round. Vick faces the Houston Texans receiver Andre Johnson in the second round. The results of that matchup will be revealed on Monday.
Moore said he would have no problem giving the Madden NFL 12 cover to Vick. Vick has held the spot before, appearing on the cover of Madden NFL 2004, four years before his conviction.
PETA Protests The Michael Vick Madden Cover That Doesn't Exist Yet [Deadspin. Image by Getty]