SBD/April 27, 2012/People and Pop Culture

Jimmie Johnson Repeats Atop Forbes List Of Most Influential Athletes In America

NASCAR driver JIMMIE JOHNSON for the second consecutive year tops Forbes' list of "America's Most Influential Athletes," according to Tom Van Riper of FORBES. Jets QB TIM TEBOW is listed second, up from No. 10 last year. This year, six of the 10 most influential athletes are NFL QBs, with both the Broncos' PEYTON MANNING and the Giants' ELI MANNING "in the fold." The list was created using results from Nielsen and E-Poll poll that "surveyed over 1,100 adults about dozens of well-known athletes to measure their likeability and whether they’re considered 'influential,' an important quality for marketers." Candidates were limited to "pro athletes who are currently active and who score at least 20% 'awareness' with the general public." Dropping off the list from '11 are driver JEFF GORDON, U.S. Olympic Gold Medalist swimmer MICHAEL PHELPS, Steelers S TROY POLAMALU, Heat F LEBRON JAMES and TNT analyst SHAQUILLE O'NEAL, who is no longer eligible after retiring from the NBA last year. Their replacements on the list: Eli Manning, Knicks G JEREMY LIN, boxer MANNY PACQUIAO, Saints QB DREW BREES and Packers QB AARON RODGERS. Below is the complete Forbes list (FORBES.com, 4/23).

RK
NAME
% INFLUENTIAL
LIKE/LIKE A LOT
1
NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson
25%
40%
2
Jets QB Tim Tebow
24%
50%
3
Broncos QB Peyton Manning
21%
52%
4
Boxer Manny Pacquiao
20%
59%
5
Patriots QB Tom Brady
19%
38%
6
Packers QB Aaron Rodgers
19%
62%
7
NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.
19%
41%
8
Saints QB Drew Brees
19%
63%
9
Giants QB Eli Manning
18%
57%
10
Knicks G Jeremy Lin
18%
66%

 

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