After five weeks and over 13 million votes, EA Sports and ESPN’s SportsNation announced on Thursday that Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis defeated Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick in the championship of the Madden 2012 Cover Vote. Thanks to the help of Browns fans, Hillis received 66 percent of votes (over 600,000) in the championship round–which shows just how strong the Cleveland fan base is.
No city with three major sports franchises has waited longer to win a championship than the city of Cleveland–with the last time coming in 1964. Browns fans have received a bad rep over the years for not being passionate towards their team, but the truth is–they’ve always been one of the most passionate fan bases in the NFL.
Don’t think so? Just take a look at this latest victory by Hillis in the Madden tournament to see how much this fan base loves their football team.
Here’s a former seventh-round pick out of Arkansas that was sent packing from the Denver Broncos to the Browns along with two draft picks in exchange for Brady Quinn–who is now the third-string quarterback on the roster. Hillis has recorded just 397 rushing yards and six touchdowns his first two seasons in the league before emerging into one of the top running backs in 2010–finishing with 1,177 rushing yards to go along with 11 touchdowns.
Even if he does end up being just a one-hit wonder, Hillis will make his mark in history now that he earned the chance to appear on the cover for Madden 2012. The fact that Hillis had to overcome Matt Ryan, Jamaal Charles, and Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers before taking out Vick in the championship shows just how strong the Browns fan base–so it’s time to put an end to all the nonsense that they don’t appreciate their beloved football team like other fan bases in the NFL.
Dan Parzych is the Lead NFL Content Editor for RantSports.com/NFL, where he writes and edits NFL content for RantSports.com.