Survey shows 15 percent increase in those who don't like Tom Brady

For the first time in his career, a poll indicates there are almost as many people who say they dislike Tom Brady as people who say they are fans of the New England Patriots quarterback.

E-Poll Market Research released findings Friday on a poll conducted this week that asked more than 1,000 people representative of the U.S. population what they thought about Brady.

The company's E-Score celebrity index shows that 47 percent of those surveyed now say they don't like Brady. An E-Poll survey taken in February, a little more than two weeks after the Patriots' win in Super Bowl XLIX, showed 32 percent of the respondents didn't like him at that point.

Ten years ago, the number of people in E-Poll surveys who said they liked Brady hovered around 90 percent. By June 2008, the offseason after Spygate, Brady's positive appeal fell to a then-career low of 77 percent. Brady hit another career low with a 68 percent likeability rating in an E-Poll survey taken Feb. 20, 2015.

The company says the February decline was related to Deflategate and not just spiteful fans of other teams, as many who took the survey then wrote they were troubled about Brady's skirting league rules regarding air pressure in the footballs. That's combined with the fact Brady didn't see a popularity dip at any point during his other three Super Bowl victories.

The average athlete among the more than 1,500 athletes in E-Poll's database is liked by 86 percent of those surveyed. Brady's 53 percent like-to-47 percent dislike ratio is the exact ratio that those surveyed by E-Poll currently gave Tiger Woods.

Much of the future sentiment about Brady will have to do with how things unfold with his appeal and any legal action he takes against the league, as well as how he performs when he is back on the field. But E-Poll CEO Gerry Philpott said it's possible Brady could return to his pre-Super Bowl numbers (75 percent liked) by the end of next season.

Brady's two biggest sponsors, Under Armour and UGG Australia, have been quiet all week, not commenting on Brady's situation.