Bad, bad week for the NFL. Not only was old friend Donte Stallworth officially charged with DUI manslaughter (a charge that could land him in jail for 15 years). Another former AFC East star, former Buffalo Bill running back and serial child-producer Travis Henry, reached a plea agreement with the federal government on drug charges that could put him away for a while.
WEIGHT PROBLEM: Former Cowboy defensive tackle Leonardo Carson was arrested by the FBI last week on drug-trafficking charges, including conspiring to distribute 44 pounds of pot and more than five kilos of coke.
Meanwhile, ex-Falcons QB and dog-fighting czar Michael Vick was in bankruptcy court this past week. According to court documents, Vick blew through more than $17.7 million in a little more than two years and is now broke. Vick's lawyers are proposing a plan that would allow him to keep $750,000 a year if and when he returns to the NFL, with the remainder of his money going to creditors. The fact that Vick, who once signed a contract with $37 million in guaranteed bonuses, is already bankrupt would be mind-boggling enough on its own, but he's managed to top even himself. Vick announced that when he gets out of jail next month, he'll work for a construction company in his hometown of Newport News, Virginia — for $10 an hour. Hey, sometimes it's good to have a Plan B.
And it doesn't end there. While the cases of more-famous players like Vick, Henry, Stallworth, and Plaxico Burress (who was dropped by the Giants even as his weapons case was postponed last week) dominated the news, yet another former NFL player quietly got himself in serious trouble. Leonardo Carson, a former defensive tackle for the Dallas Cowboys, was arrested by the FBI last week on drug-trafficking charges. According to an indictment handed down by a federal grand jury in Mobile, Alabama, Carson is accused of conspiring to distribute 44 pounds of weed, more than 50 grams of crack, and more than five kilos of cocaine. Authorities arrested Carson, his brother, and another man, and stuck them with charges that could land each in jail for up to 10 years.
Carson is one of several ex-Cowboys to be arrested for dealing in serious quantities of drugs, the most famous being eating machine Nate Newton (he of the famous twin "trash bags full of weed" busts), cornerback Derek Ross (caught with 25 pounds of weed), and running back Troy Hambrick (sentenced to five years in federal prison for selling crack to an informant). Oddly enough, it seems that these Cowboy-dealer arrests follow the Carson pattern — i.e., the player comes to the Cowboys at the end of his career, gets cut or retires, and is soon thereafter arrested for moving weight. It's almost like an unofficial NFL retirement plan.
Anyway, give Carson 30 points — and wish him luck getting any leniency in Alabama.
Mr. Snyder's neighborhood
Here's a really weird one that we're going to have to revisit when more details emerge. It seems former NBA swingman Kirk Snyder — the 16th pick in the 2004 draft, he played for several teams in his career before ending up in China's pro league this past year — was arrested last week for breaking into the home of a pair of married dentists and beating the living hell out of them.
Authorities in Warren County, Ohio (near Cincinnati), say Snyder entered the home of his neighbors, Brad and Eugenia Roberts, in the early morning hours of March 30 and beat the two with his fists and an alarm clock before abruptly leaving. He was tracked down by a police dog and arrested within minutes. Later, while in jail, he allegedly beat the crap out of another inmate. Snyder's been charged with burglary and aggravated assault; his attorney says he won't speak. Needless to say, a judge has ordered a psychological evaluation.
It's been a while since we've seen a sports crime combine violence and crazy to this degree. Give Snyder 70 points, and a spot near the top of our list.
When he's not googling "the Carson show" and "dentists drilled," Matt Taibbi writes for Rolling Stone. He can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org.