Desmond Bryant knows everyone’s laughing at the picture.
But he’s not going to keep talking about the unfortunate photo that made him an internet sensation long before the Browns made him a rich man.
“I’ve seen the picture and I’ve heard that it’s out, but I really don’t know to what extent,” Bryant said, via Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “I’ve really already kind of addressed that whole situation. It’s an ongoing legal matter and I’m not supposed to talk too much about it.”
That’s fine, but it won’t go away, as he became the butt of jokes around the web for the eyes-half-open, tongue-half-out look on his face after he was arrested on criminal mischief charges.
The Browns obviously didn’t mind, as they gave him a five-year, $34 million deal on the first day of free agency.
“We looked at everything we could, we know people that know Desmond very well,” Browns CEO Joe Banner said. “Our new strength coach [Brad Roll] was with him in Oakland last year. So we evaluated the situation, we looked at his history and felt very comfortable that he fit the profile of what we’re looking for here.”
Bryant, who went to Harvard, was also arrested in 2010 for his role in a beating in a convenience store parking lot (link includes a more conventional mug shot) in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
“I obviously made a mistake,” he said Thursday of the most recent arrest. “I apologize for everything that happened, but I feel like I’ve learned from it and moved on. I think I’ve done enough over the years I’ve been in the league to exhibit that’s really not the kind of person I am. I think in time I’ll be able to show you guys and whoever else wants to know that’s really not indicative of me. It was an accident. I’ve moved beyond that and hopefully everybody else will be able to.”
That’s probably unlikely, but his behavior off the field (and sadly, his play on it) will allow people to make up their own mind what kind of person he is.