Another amazing part of the ex-Pats story was the variety. Former linebacker Eugene Lockhart helped add a current-events news hook to the phenomenon by getting picked up for mortgage fraud, in a scheme to rake in millions in fees by generating phony appraisals. And former Pats training-camp invitee (and charter member of the Rich Tylski Prematurely-Retiring-Pats-Lineman Hall of Fame) Joe Panos got busted for attacking a dude's car with a golf club after catching the guy schtupping his wife on Valentine's Day. Even a guy who wears the team's mascot costume got in on the act when he was arrested on prostitution-related charges in Rhode Island last month.
Finally, there was 2007 third receiver Donte Stallworth, seemingly a good guy who made a very bad DUI decision and ended up killing a guy in a hit-and-run in Florida. Stallworth — the most recent of the ex-Pats to go down — paid a big settlement and got an extraordinarily light sentence, one that riled up more than a few Floridians. His return to the NFL is very questionable at this point.
Tough year for the former players, one that mirrored the current team's bad luck on the field. Let's hope it's someone else's issue in 2010.
Matt Taibbi can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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