Michael Vick, the former NFL quarterback who recently was released from prison for a dog-fighting conviction, is having a hard time finding a team that wants him. No doubt one of the reasons is the public relations baggage he’d bring and the controversy he’d generate.
If he ever plays football again, it’s hard to imagine companies lining up with endorsement offers. At one time Vick was an admired athlete and an attractive endorsement prospect. But, once his criminal activities came to light, public admiration quickly turned to revulsion.
Even though Vick has served his time, his tarnished image will be difficult, if not impossible, to repair. No company wants to be tied into a PR nightmare like animal cruelty or have its product or service associated with someone who committed such heinous acts.
Don Beehler provides public relations consulting services to small- and medium-sized advertising agencies and businesses.