If Ndamukong Suh has a subscription to Forbes magazine -- and we sincerely hope he does -- it's fun to imagine his reaction upon learning he's the fourth-most disliked athlete in America, according to a Nielsen and E-Poll survey.
"I stomp one dude in the chest on national television and all of sudden I'm Skeletor and Jeffrey Dahmer rolled into one," the Detroit Lions defensive tackle would (conceivably) say. "The worst."
It's been a stunning about-face for Suh, who led Nielsen and E-Pollâs survey results of most-liked NFL players just four months ago. His stomp of Packers guard Evan Dietrich-Smith -- the fallout no doubt amplified by the fact it occurred on Thanksgiving Day -- led to a two-game suspension and plenty of public outcry labeling the Lions star as a dirty player.
âHe went from being so popular to being a pariah in one season,â said Stephen Master, VP of Sports for Nielsen. "The good news for Suh is that heâs a young player who can shake off a mistake if he keeps it clean from now on."
Suh can take solace in knowing that he missed out on the medal stand in the survey. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick took the gold, his prison sentence for dog fighting-related offenses continuing to linger in the public consciousness. Tiger Woods came in second for the whole gross-infidelity-torpedoed-my-legendary-career thing. Somewhat surprisingly, wide receiver Plaxico Burress was No. 3. Apparently, the public has little sympathy for men who wear sweatpants to nightclubs.
Scores are derived from the total percentage of fans that claim their view of an athlete is "dislike"; "dislike a lot" or "dislike somewhat." The field is limited to those registering at least 10 percent awareness with the general public. Terrell Owens ranked eighth on the list, which just seems cruel at this point.