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Cris Carter: Mike Brown took me off Bengals’ draft board, too

Former Minnesota Vikings receiver Carter cries after being named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame at the 2013 Class of Enshrinement show in New Orleans Reuters

Bengals owner Mike Brown got some attention around the NFL this week when he said that he took Aaron Hernandez off the Bengals’ draft board in 2010 because of concerns about Hernandez’s character. It turns out that many years earlier, Brown also took a future Hall of Famer off the Bengals’ draft board because of character concerns.

Cris Carter, the receiver who was voted into the Hall of Fame this year, said today on ESPN that Brown has told him that the Bengals decided not to draft Carter because they were worried that he wouldn’t be able to stay out of trouble off the field.

“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 a great player at Ohio State, but he had a drug problem, and he was also banned by the NCAA for hiring an agent before his senior season. The Eagles took Carter with a fourth-round pick in the 1987 supplemental draft — a bargain considering his talent, but a risk considering his off-field issues — and although he played fairly well in his three seasons in Philadelphia, Eagles coach Buddy Ryan ultimately decided Carter’s drug problem was too much to deal with, and Carter was cut.

In the end, Carter got clean and became one of the best receivers in the NFL in Minnesota. But that was only after the team that drafted him let go of him. Which means the Bengals — who have had more than their share of off-field trouble makers — were probably wise to take Carter off their draft board.

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63 Responses to “Cris Carter: Mike Brown took me off Bengals’ draft board, too”
  1. hawkslv says: Jul 3, 2013 6:08 PM

    Vikings then went and did one better drafting Moss a few years later when 20+ teams took him off the draft board.

  2. djax10isthebomb says: Jul 3, 2013 6:10 PM

    C’MON MAN!!!!

  3. bowdowntothebengals says: Jul 3, 2013 6:12 PM

    Go Bengals!

  4. Rick Spielman is a Magician says: Jul 3, 2013 6:18 PM

    I love that the picture makes it look like he has a halo.

  5. jeremycrowhurst says: Jul 3, 2013 6:28 PM

    Definitely didn’t fit the mold for the Bengals. Maybe if the line on him was, “all he does is DROP touchdowns….”

  6. sschmiggles says: Jul 3, 2013 6:35 PM

    That’s pretty funny, since Hernandez was a local player too. Probably one of the reasons the Pats decided to draft him.

  7. mjasper24 says: Jul 3, 2013 6:36 PM

    Chris carter loves making Chris carter part of the story.

  8. vincentbojackson says: Jul 3, 2013 6:45 PM

    Mike Brown apparently forgot that his team cornered the market on draft busts, head cases, and criminals for much of the last decade.

    Bragging that he guessed right on Hernandez is comical.

    He should concentrate on upgrading his team’s high school level practice facilities instead of playing Monday morning quarterback.

  9. lionsplayoffs says: Jul 3, 2013 7:11 PM

    All he does is catch touchdown passes.

  10. packerbackernj says: Jul 3, 2013 7:36 PM

    Philly didn’t get much from drafting him either. Drug dealers did though.

    “Vikings then went and did one better drafting Moss a few years later when 20+ teams took him off the draft board.”

    And then a few years after that, the Vikings got the steal of all WR steals in Koren Robinson.

  11. kenstabler says: Jul 3, 2013 7:37 PM

    Your a Draft god.

  12. toonloonboon says: Jul 3, 2013 7:41 PM

    and they kept akili smith on it, for his quarterbacking prowess

  13. cranespy says: Jul 3, 2013 7:43 PM

    Agree or disagree matters not….the fact that Brown told CC the truth about what he did and why he did it is highly commendable.

  14. ryann252013 says: Jul 3, 2013 7:44 PM

    Mike Brown took me off his draft board to!!

  15. kd75 says: Jul 3, 2013 7:50 PM

    How can you call Cris Carter a “Future Hall of Famer”?

    Until he gets voted in he’s got to buy a ticket just like you and I do.

    Tomorrow is never promised. And you ain’t in the club until you are voted in the club.

    I didn’t watch Cris Carter play much. But when he played the Giants he kind of did nothing. I thought Anthony Carter was way better.

  16. redeemerac says: Jul 3, 2013 7:51 PM

    So we drafted Corey Dillon instead!

  17. urmomsmyho says: Jul 3, 2013 8:14 PM

    Mike Brown failed to disclose that the information they had was that Chris Carter just catches touchdowns.

  18. 84smooninlambeaunevergetsold says: Jul 3, 2013 8:15 PM

    “I have never seen anybody who’s had hands better than me”
    -Cris Carter

    And that’s a fact!

  19. harrisonhits2 says: Jul 3, 2013 8:25 PM

    Sadly if the Bengals or another team far from New England had drafted Hernandez, this probably would never have happened.

    Hernandez was unable to break from the poisonous people of his youth in part because all they had to do was drive up the highway for an hour or 2 to get to him.

    If he had been far enough away so they couldn’t easily drive to get at him at the very least he would have been removed from the environment that this occurred in.

  20. metalhead65 says: Jul 3, 2013 8:27 PM

    enough with the mike brown appreciation club. so he did not draft 2 guys with issues coming out of college. how does that make him a saint all of a sudden? what about all the guys he did draft that did get into trouble? or the other wasted picks he made over the years who did nothing to help the bengals. while it is nice they have become a respectable team they are not championship material as long as he is in control and signing guys on the cheap instead of spending money on somebody who can make a difference.

  21. billyisradical says: Jul 3, 2013 8:40 PM

    With the long list of players that had “off the field issues” that the Bengals have either drafted or picked up in free agency, why in the world would Mike Brown publicly say this? Chris Carter is an NFL analyst(whether you like or dislike his takes), it is his job to talk about this stuff and relate it to his experiences. Mike Brown is an owner, a terrible and stupid owner, who should just keep his mouth shut.

  22. faithful209er says: Jul 3, 2013 8:43 PM

    During cc’s career, the Bengals played in a Super Bowl. Carter never did. Maybe Brown wasn’t as dumb as Carter is trying to make him look.

  23. drunknbflo says: Jul 3, 2013 8:49 PM

    Andre Reed should have gone into the HOF before this clown.

  24. laserrocketarm31 says: Jul 3, 2013 9:17 PM

    Certainly would not say he had a drug “problem”

  25. whatjusthapped says: Jul 3, 2013 9:25 PM

    Most players would gladly trade their HOF for a couple of Superbowl rings. Playing for the Vikings, Carter never really had a chance and the best chance he had was in 1998 when when they lost in the NFC championship game after Gary Anderson redefined the term “choke” in missing his only FG attempt of the year.

    Kinda brings a tear to my eye thinking of what an a$$hole Carter is and how deserving he and the Vikings were of that terrible twist of fate. There is a God in heaven.

  26. tendigitpoet says: Jul 3, 2013 9:26 PM

    @ kd75:

    Carter was elected to the HOF on February 2, 2013.

  27. tabais says: Jul 3, 2013 9:28 PM

    What a non story by a man who just wants attention. Is he proud of being a druggy in college and getting taken off draft boards? I’m sure Cincinnati wasn’t the only team to take him off their boards. Cincinnati was proven right to skip him.

    Now I’m glad Carter was able to turn around his life with the second chance he had but don’t try to spin this like Cincinnati made a mistake.

  28. bigtimebrownie says: Jul 3, 2013 9:32 PM

    I forgot why I stopped watching/listening to ESPN. Now I remember…

  29. indianaviking says: Jul 3, 2013 9:32 PM

    Kd75, please tell me you are kidding.

  30. whitdog23 says: Jul 3, 2013 9:39 PM

    Poor C.C. — you were first team All America.
    Learn the recognition

  31. purp1eone says: Jul 3, 2013 9:57 PM

    Talk all the BS you want about Carter. The man changed his life for the better and ended up in the HOF.

    What have you done? Carter helps a lot of people to this day while most of you idiots poke and keys on a key board and talk crap.

  32. samlecure says: Jul 3, 2013 9:59 PM

    Why is SoP’s draft board so relevant all of a sudden?

  33. purp1eone says: Jul 3, 2013 10:07 PM

    The bengals top two receivers in history don’t add up to Carters total.

    Yah OK, Carter got 8 pro bowls, 2 all pros , 1101 career receptions, two seasons with 122 and is a HOFer.

    Hate all you want but all you haters are envious and jealous he wasn’t on your team.

    And if you think just because he didn’t get to a Superbowl you obviously don’t know football because I don’t know too many wideouts that can carry a team. Look at Johnson last and what did his team do? Thats right……

  34. hyerye says: Jul 3, 2013 10:08 PM

    2nd best WR ever in my opinion. Only behind the G. O. A. T. Jerry Rice

  35. gurnblanstonreturns says: Jul 3, 2013 10:21 PM

    Voting in this clown is the biggest disgrace in the history of the Hall of Fame. Including cris carter among immortals like Jerry Rice, Art Monk, Fred Biletnikoff, Paul Warfield and Lance Alworth is the triumph of Madden video game stats over true greatness.

  36. shlort says: Jul 3, 2013 10:48 PM

    So, what Carter is saying is that teams should draft players even if they turn out to be murderers? Is that the moral of this story?

    Teams pass on troubled players because they don’t want the problems associated with it. Carter ended up doing alright, but he was also one time in trouble away from being out of the game. Carter is one of the lucky ones. He turned his life around before it was too late.

    Anyway, I can see Carters point, but I can also see a time in the near future where teams will all pass on troubled players and the NFL will step in and disqualify players from being on an NFL roster if their problems seem too heavy a weight to bear for the brand.

    In order for the NFL to survive, it will have to make changes in who it allows to represent the brand. People are growing tired of the free pass system the NFL has and how the NFL promotes players as role models, only to have that player end up on the wrong side of the law.

    Does anyone actually think people will sit idly by and let their kids be exposed to the lifestyle some of these players live? How many more murderers are going to have to be paraded in front of cameras before the NFL realizes that the game is more important than the players?

  37. anygivenwednesday13 says: Jul 3, 2013 10:50 PM

    CC is the Johhny Cochran of football.

  38. easyeintennessee says: Jul 3, 2013 11:22 PM

    Mike Brown was big enough to admit he was wrong. Carter’s head was big enough to still call him out on it.

  39. nflfan22 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:32 PM

    kd75 says:
    Jul 3, 2013 7:50 PM
    How can you call Cris Carter a “Future Hall of Famer”?

    Until he gets voted in he’s got to buy a ticket just like you and I do.

    Tomorrow is never promised. And you ain’t in the club until you are voted in the club.

    I didn’t watch Cris Carter play much. But when he played the Giants he kind of did nothing. I thought Anthony Carter was way better.

     —
    Make sure you watch the HOF inductions this August.

    Dummy

  40. tokyosandblaster says: Jul 3, 2013 11:37 PM

    This guy is a joke, and has been his whole life.

    He should be known for pushing off to make catches more than anything else.

    BTW, Larry Fitzgerald is an obvious upgrade in the hands department.

    What is it with Vikings players (current and past) always feeling the need to self promote? Let your play do the talking. Win something, then talk smack. These players are as bad as their fans.

  41. greenmeattruck says: Jul 4, 2013 12:05 AM

    Yeah, and Romo had a bounty on your head, too. Go away CC, no one wants to here from a broke-down old receiver who’s desperate to stay relevant.

  42. jjbadd385 says: Jul 4, 2013 12:45 AM

    All of you who are talking bad about Carter, must have never watched him play…he was certainly no slouch!! Way better than an average WR..

  43. blackngold4life says: Jul 4, 2013 1:24 AM

    What kind of DRUG problem? Hope it wasn’t ANYTHING white..

  44. djlawless1 says: Jul 4, 2013 1:38 AM

    These days Mike Brown would have signed him after the Eagles dumped him just like Pacman Jones.

  45. coachbeck says: Jul 4, 2013 1:48 AM

    Quote from Mile Brown that Florio left out

    “Going way back to when my father was here, we were very conscious of picking people we thought were people you could live with (and) the right type of person,” Brown said. “And then, lo and behold, one of the teams we played seemed to reach out and bring in guys who weren’t always what they should be – at least that’s how it appeared to us. But they were good football players. They sort of had us for lunch. We then began doing some of that.

    “Sometimes you win doing that, and sometimes you don’t. There’s no way to tell going in how it’s going to work out. We had some people that we had question marks on at the time of the draft. A few were really tremendous players, but there came a time when for the most part they made life difficult. It wasn’t always the case, but there was enough of it. In the last few years, we’ve gone back to our old formula. We bring in guys, but only when we know that they’re sound people.”

  46. medieval1028 says: Jul 4, 2013 2:05 AM

    Cris Carter is still a bum and not worthy of the HOF. He was always, and still is, all about himself. He was lucky to have found a team that told him in no uncertain terms that he’d better stay clean or he’d be a pariah and never again play in the NFL.

  47. johanvil says: Jul 4, 2013 4:35 AM

    “Eagles coach Buddy Ryan ultimately decided Carter’s drug problem was too much to deal with, and Carter was cut.”

    Buddy Ryan’s one and only time he bothered dealing with the offense?

  48. joetoronto says: Jul 4, 2013 5:06 AM

    Mike Brown passes on anybody that’s going to cost a lot of money.

    That’s why the Bungals are a real team and never have been.

  49. melikefootball says: Jul 4, 2013 6:56 AM

    Doesn’t the picture remind you of some mug shots you have seen in the post office.

  50. lawyermalloy says: Jul 4, 2013 7:06 AM

    Of all the owners to talk to;Mike Brown????
    The guy is the true “village idiot”. His father has rolled over in his grave 20 times already due to way Mike has run that franchise. Until 7-8 years ago,whenever he hired Marvin Lewis and a few real football guys, he was running the team into the ground. For 15-20 solid years, he was of the opinion that college scouting was not important and only had TWO(2) people assigned to cover the entire country looking at college kids and he was one of them as the self appointed General Manager.Until he ceded football operations to football guys, they were the laughing stock of the league. So seeking his opinion on Hernandez or any other player is simply a joke.

  51. dumbhobby says: Jul 4, 2013 7:18 AM

    Wow, so where did the word ‘ information’ become ‘poor character’? Or does he just like to be linked to AH?

  52. bengalguy says: Jul 4, 2013 7:51 AM

    Mike Brown just called me and said “I took you off our Draft Board last month!”

  53. rodgersrodgersheisking says: Jul 4, 2013 8:00 AM

    There’s a surprise! Cris Carter pitching in his two cents on a story that doesn’t involve him. Can’t stand him.

  54. polamalusboyfriend says: Jul 4, 2013 8:21 AM

    Mike Brown is a goddamned genius.

  55. puckthefatriots says: Jul 4, 2013 8:47 AM

    Punk move by Carter(as usual).

  56. patriots123456 says: Jul 4, 2013 9:06 AM

    Mike Brown & the Bengals, the new “Moral Compass” of the NFL.

    Who’da thunk it?

  57. skins4me says: Jul 4, 2013 9:06 AM

    SO!!!! Is CC trying to make the point that he and AH should be concidered as the same. Alot of teams take guys off their boards for many reasons. It just so happens that the Bengals who have a history of troubled players got this one RIGHT!!! It appears.

  58. atthemurph says: Jul 4, 2013 9:10 AM

    no he shouldn’t.

  59. atthemurph says: Jul 4, 2013 9:11 AM

    sorry in reply to:

    drunknbflo says:
    Jul 3, 2013 8:49 PM
    Andre Reed should have gone into the HOF before this clown.

  60. nfloracle says: Jul 4, 2013 9:40 AM

    I wish ESPN would have taken Carter and Keyshawn off their draft board when they were hiring talking heads.

  61. afewzigzagsplease says: Jul 4, 2013 9:53 AM

    I’m a life long Cowboys fan and when the Eagles put Carter on the trade block I wanted Dallas to get into the mix. Knowing the two teams were Division rivals I knew Philly probably wouldn’t work a trade with the Boys. Too bad for Dallas and me because Chris was my favorite wide receiver ever. Why he wasn’t a first ballot HOF inductee still annoys me. The guy is also great as an analyst, and he is a first class human being.

  62. indywilson40 says: Jul 4, 2013 10:46 AM

    Is there anyone in sports less humble than Cris Carter? I’m predicting his HOF speech will be 3 hours long, everyone will leave and he will still be talking about how great he was.

  63. dirtyharry44 says: Jul 4, 2013 12:26 PM

    Mr Ego always has to get his name in the press. Twist every story to be about him. How many rings do you have have Ego Man??? Yeah, that’s what I thought. One of the most annoying ex athletes of all time.

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