Bengals owner Mike Brown conveniently revealed this week that he “avoided” Aaron Hernandez during the 2010 NFL draft, even taking the talented tight end off his draft board entirely. As it turns out, Hernandez wasn’t the only one.
Brown also had issues with eventual Hall of Famer Cris Carter, in the 1987 supplemental draft, Carter revealed during an episode of NFL Live on ESPN on Wednesday. Brown thought the Ohio State standout was too much of a character concern for the Bengals, Carter said.
“Coming out of college from Ohio State, I was a first-team All-American,” Carter said. “Mike Brown, I’ve talked to him in the last several years. He took me off their list, too. He said he regretted it because I was a local talent and he wished they hadn’t, but he told me, ‘Cris, I took you off our board based on the information we had.’”
Carter was one of the best players in college football at the time, but, similar to Hernandez, he was the center of drug-related rumors. He was also ruled ineligible for his senior season with the Buckeyes after secretly signing with an agent the previous summer. That led him to declare for the supplemental draft, where the Eagles selected him with a fourth-round pick.
Carter had success in Philly, but his struggles with cocaine and alcohol ended up running him out of town after just a three seasons. Eventually, he was able to clean up his act, and he became one of the best wide receivers in NFL history over 12 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings.
Brown might have been right about Hernandez, but he has to be kicking himself for overlooking Carter.
Photo via Facebook/Cris Carter