Paul Burmeister says Mallett’s drug use “documented” by NFL

Getty Images

Chris Kouffman of appeared on NFL Network’s Path to the Draft program last Friday to discuss allegations that quarterback Ryan Mallett used drugs at Arkansas.

The interview became a bit heated when NFLN host Paul Burmeister took issue with Kouffman’s assertion that there was little or no proof of Mallett’s alleged drug problems.

“I’ve talked to general managers,” said Burmeister. “I’ve talked to offensive coordinators. I’ve talked to quarterback coaches who have serious concern because of time they’ve spent with Ryan Mallett.

“What they have discovered is documented drug use, some real character issues, and wondering if they want (Mallett) to be the face of their franchise. These are people who make it their business to know Ryan Mallett inside and out.”

Replied Kouffman, “This is not the time of year when NFL teams are known for being particularly truthful or forthcoming about what they really think about players.”

Burmeister persisted in citing “off-the-record conversations with general managers and coordinators” to support what he claims is confirmed proof that Mallett was a drug user in Arkansas. The rest of the interview consisted of Kouffman’s responses being cut short by Burmeister’s forceful questions and conclusions, based on his dealings with NFL team brass.

Kouffman was brought on the show because he wrote a March 29 South Florida Sun-Sentinel column entitled “Draft Winds: Lies, Damn Lies and Ryan Mallett.”

The NFLN interview can be viewed at this link.

If Burmeister’s claims are valid, Ryan Mallett may he headed for the draft-weekend tumble that has been forecasted by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, FOX Sports’ Adam Caplan, and’s Tony Pauline, and hinted at by NFL Network’s Albert Breer.

51 responses to “Paul Burmeister says Mallett’s drug use “documented” by NFL

  1. Welcome to Minnesota, Ryan. You’ll be bunking with Percy. I think you’ll like it here.

  2. Saw this a couple of days ago. Great line by Kauffman

    “These off the record comments are finding themselves on the record during this program..”

    Classic draft season quote.

  3. Sad to see the continued use of gossip and unamed sources who seem to know so much about Ryan Mallett’s alleged drug use….pathetic….

    hard to believe we now have a cottage industry of so-called experts who defame these kids and tell us they know what all the NFL GM’s are thinking

    Mallett and the team that drafts him will have the last laugh….

  4. Uuuuhh….Beer Miester, how can Mallett’s drug usage be “documented” if he has never tested positive or been charged, much less convicted of the fact.

  5. How many NFL players USE drugs ? Countless.
    How bout some good character assassination. If Mallett was black everyone would be hollering “racists”.

  6. If everyone knows about the kid’s drug use, then why haven’t I heard what kind of drug, or drugs, he supposedly uses?

    Does he smoke weed? Is he into prescription meds? Does he huff paint? Does he inject ketamine into his butt cheeks?

    Lots of smoke. Can’t seem to find the fire.

  7. Define drug user? Was he smoking crack in between classes or was he smoking a blunt after practice? I don’t advocate drug use of any kind but there is a big difference. NFL coaches crack me up with this stuff. Nobody says anything when your QB is doped up on narcotic pain relievers but smoke weed and you can’t lead.

  8. This sounds a lot like what happened to Dan Marino. He also dropped down in the draft because of constant drug use rumors (more than likely, there was probably some truth to the rumors, since most college players at that time used marijuana). He turned out to be a pretty good pick for the Miami Dolphins.

    Look, Mallett may wind up being a turd, but, in my opinion, he has the best skills of any QB in this draft. I think a team has to look at whether he has all the other intangibles needed to be a QB in the NFL. I haven’t sat down with him, so I have no idea whether Mallett posses the capabilities to succeed, but Paul Burmeister doesn’t know much about his character either. He is basing his judgment solely upon hearsay and there is a very good reason why hearsay testimony is not permitted in our judicial system–it isn’t reliable. And if you don’t believe me, just ask the teams that needed a QB and passed on Dan Marino.

  9. carlgerbschmidt says:
    Apr 26, 2011 4:12 PM
    Welcome to Minnesota, Ryan. You’ll be bunking with Percy. I think you’ll like it here.
    I hope this happens… I’m a Vikings fan and I would love to have Mallett… You will see… And whats the deal with people ripping on Minny, what did we do besides sign 40 year old BF and make a run only to get screwed out of the superbowl… If anyone should be hated its NO because I am soo sick of hearing about how a hurricane 7 years ago makes the nfl team deserve a superbowl (puke).

  10. “rdssc says: Apr 26, 2011 4:18 PM

    Saw this a couple of days ago. Great line by Kauffman

    “These off the record comments are finding themselves on the record during this program..”

    Classic draft season quote.”

    I agree totally, Burmeister is not only acting like his GM buddies and OC buddies couldn’t possibly be lying to him, he is being a huge douche when he says…

    “Were you able to have any off the record conversations with General Managers or Offensive Coordinators that supported what you believe?” (… because I did have those conversations and they support what I believe, so nani-nani-boo-boo)

  11. I saw the interview. Burmeister was being a douche and not letting the poor guy speak. It seems he had a pre-arranged agenda to use CK as a foil to sneak in his cowardly unattributable hearsay, innuendos and BS defaming Mallett. Whether it’s just unfounded, unattributable libel or Paul’s in the pocket of some team drafting in the 20’s trying to ensure that Mallett lasts that long, what I do know is that RM’s probably the best on field QB in the draft. I’m hoping the Fins grab him at 15 in a classic case of Packers/Aaron Rodgers deja vu.

  12. In before: Everyone in college uses drugs, etc etc…

    If that’s true, this guy must have done more than just a few drugs now and then, for it to be brought up so often. The fact that we’re hearing anything about it at all makes it sound like he was the Charlie Sheen of the NCAA.

    Either someone keeps putting this info out to kill his draft stock, or someone is actually trying to prevent Marinovich 2.0.

  13. I swear to god if all of this ripping on Mallett is about pot I am going to go burn down all of the media outlets… Its time to stop being so self-righteous about everything…. Just look at the players that tested pos for pot, Ricky Williams, Percy Harvin in the NFL and Michael Phelps! Ya pot clearly affects your health and ability to perform at a high level.

  14. Paul Burmeister’s interview with Chris Kouffman was days ago. Why post it now? Oh, since we’re waiting till tomorrow for more lockout news we’ll drum up something controversial about the draft. Hope Mallet does “fall” all the way to number 35 and the Bengals. All these comments about what Mallet “Sounds” like because of his accent make me sick. Non or us know and those of you saying you do know he did this or that are full of the stuff that starts out as grass and comes out the back end of a bull. Those saying he’s inaccurate clearly haven’t done their homework. I predict the next article on PFT will be about how you can’t believe anything you hear in the days before the draft.

  15. People, this is not a laughing matter. His dorm mates told him that if he wants to get lucky, he needs to take the date rape drug. Then his dorm mates sack him all night.

  16. Yes he’s smoked weed before. Big deal. He’s not gonna test positive. There’s ways around it. I’ll take him in Miami. I don’t mind 2 picks as long as he puts up 300 with a few touchdowns. I like the ball moving and he can definitely move it. Go Phins!

  17. Find it funny that when an older player gets addicted to pain killers, everyone stands up as fast as possible to try to give reasons or write Sunday morning one on one interviews about their trials with addiction, but when a young man smokes a bit of weed in college (as if any haven’t), they stand up in swarms to exile the kid.


    He’d be in less trouble drinking, and it’s way, way worse for a person. Get a grip with this stupid law against pot already.

  18. ballergac:
    “come on where there is smoke there is fire…”

    The other day in the lab I work in, I put dry ice in the water bath. There was plenty of smoke, but no fire.

    This isn’t 1926 people. It’s weed, it’s one of the most beneficial crops on the planet, and it’s not a big deal. Someday, all the idiots that try to call it a gateway drug and demonize it have to wake up.

    I don’t smoke it but most everybody I know does. It’s not a big deal. I think many would be shocked to find out how many “upper class” people smoke weed. Stop the prohibition against pot and stop the real drugs.

  19. Funny.. this is the SAME exact thing that happened to Dan Marino.

    Some reports kept coming from a source (cough Dolphins cough) that had little to no proof saying Marino was a drug user in college.

    Next thing you know he plummets down the draft board and is seleceted in the 20’s.. like the 5th or 6th QB picked that year.

    With these claims being so broad and vague I wonder what “drug” they are referring to? Caffeine is a drug… alcohol is a drug… so is that tank of Oxygen they poof on on the sidelines of each game.

    I wouldnt be surprised if its the Dolphins at it again.

  20. commoncents says: Apr 26, 2011 4:14 PM

    Clarify the drug!!!


    exactly…smoking a little weed is quite a bit different than being a heroin junky or a cokehead

  21. Maybe that means that Mallet’s 1st round talent will be picked up with someone’s 2nd or 3rd round pick. If Mallet stays clean, he is catch and if not, he is a bust.

  22. The guy was at a party where somebody lit up a fatty and he got a contact high. Whoop. Dee. Do.

    I’ll bet 90% of college athletes have been in the same boat, but we’re expected to believe that the media hate-fest for Mallet is valid becuase all kinds of unnamed sources and anoynmous team general managers seem to be crawling out of the wood-work to bash the guy who is probably best pure QB in this years draft…

    and we’re supposed to believe that it’s not because they want to draft him…

  23. Tag…It’s Mallett’s turn again..

    And seriously, what was the relevance of this story? Anyone who hangs around those who have done a little “inhaling” can tell Mallett has done a bit of inhaling. So what…

    Maybe Mallett should be like those rich caucasian boys and use their drug of choice, cocaine. Cause it seem problem with these elites snobs isn’t being caucasian but his choice of friends and extra-curricular activities. You sports folks need to leave both him and Cam alone.

    I’m sure by tomorrow it will be Cam’s turn…SMDH

  24. For those of you who think smoking weed doesn’t affect your ability to play quarterback, I’d just like to point out that neither Cheech nor Chong made it in the NFL. Case closed.

  25. The Burgermeister should realize that GMs wouldn’t tell him stuff “off the record” if they didn’t want it to become public. I predict he gets picked much higher than people expect.

  26. It was one of the oddest interviews I’ve seen on the NFL Network. It was like watching a communist being invited on to Fox News so that he could be berated.

    Burmeister seemed determined to torpedo the credibility of the report and reporter. Maybe he had been having a bad day, or may be he has some personal issue with Kouffman but this didn’t come off as a spirited debate between two people with contrary positions but verged on a rebuke.

    Frankly, Burmeister seemed almost offended by the concept that someone was not relying on what front office guys were telling him and had actually done their own research. Kouffman might be a hack and his piece might be poorly researched but Burmeister’s entire argument seemed to resolve around “it’s not what I’ve been told.”

  27. ‘I swear to god if all of this ripping on Mallett is about pot I am going to go burn down all of the media outlets’

    burn them down- not that i know the specifics anymore than any of these jackhats but they deserve to be burnt regardless.

    i can not wait until this draft is over- (i know no one cares but) i will never ever visit this pos place again.

  28. What is the difference between this issue and the Nawrocki/Newton issue? There was much outcry over that wasn’t there?

  29. Every year we get a story like this, and everybody seems to think they know what will happen. Then something else happens. I guess it’s all good entertainment. But consider this: if he really is as good as everyone seems to agree he is, and he’s really as open about his past as he seems to be (with teams, not with the media): has he grown up? Imagine a guy with that much raw talent and as smart about the game as he is. He’s had problems, but if he’s showing real signs of growing up… could he be the steal of the draft. It looks obvious he will fall into the second round or beyond at this point. I suspect whichever team decides to take the risk on him will believe they got the steal of the draft. It sure will be fun to see if he is a steal, or if he becomes the bust we all seem ready to declare him already.

  30. btw- on the flip- this dude at si has an article out today and nobody have a heart attack or anything, seriously sit down b/c this is shocking… it’s actually complementary towards ryan mallett. read it, you might faint.

  31. I remember when this same stuff was said about Dan Marino, he was using coke they said! Now how did that work out for Miami?

    Clay Matthews was suspected of Roid use there was even a false report he tested positive at the combine……… did that work out for Green Bay?

    Mike Vick was Joe clean how did that work out for Atlanta?

    Hey maybe it’s true who knows, but like the guy says this time of year it’s all lies!

  32. ‘If Mallett was black everyone would be hollering “racists”.’

    absolutely 100% fact.

  33. Unfounded rumors about Newton are gospel yet rumors about Mallet are defamation? Umm…. okay, but what else should I expect from the same people who support Dan Snyder and Jerry Richardson?

    /bring on the thumbs down

  34. tryagainplease and mackie66,

    Why would everyone be saying that since race and drug use have nothing to do with each other, dummies?

    Crawl back under the rock you both come from.

  35. I’ve been saying it since day 1:

    Knock him all you want, Ryan Mallet will be the best QB in this draft.

  36. Was it me or did Burmeister seem like a petulent little child?
    If you read Kouffman’s article on Mallett he brings good points to light and is less “he said she said” and more factual evidence of his character. Things like his team mates going to bat for him over his entire football career. and him being voted in as captain at Arkansas.

  37. realfootballfan- i’m not saying that- i’m saying that ryan is getting treated this way because he talks black thus the media can get away with whatever they want to say and no one will call them on it b/c he is white so it makes him fair game.

    mayock, in essence, called him a woman beater yesterday afternoon (or morning) before pretty much choking on his own tongue last night to correct himself. it’s absolutely ludicrous what has been said about him. has anyone with a measly public intox 2-3 years ago ever undergone this much scrutiny?

  38. If anyone deserves to smoke a little pot it’s NFL players. They get the living crap beaten out of them for 6 months a year, the brutality they visit on each other brings in billions for the league. They’re constantly at risk of being cut and out of a job. Every day they go in have their coaches scream at them for one thing or another. Why not let them go home, relax and smoke a little weed?

    This Mallet guy seems like a real a-hole and a stiff on the field. Two good reasons not to spend a high pick on him. Smoking weed? Not.

  39. There were 3 guys that combined to write that piece and Kouffman’s portion dealt with the on-field stuff. It is excruciatingly long (grab some coffee if you intend to read it) but seems well researched. There is criticism mixed in with the accolades and the three authors made a great case for the Dolphins selecting Mallett. I hope the powers that be in Miami take a long, hard look at this kid. If they trade back, he might not be there. Rumors or not, he will not fall to the 3rd/4th rounds. He could be gone before the Dolphins pick at 15. His talent is undeniable by those who bother to look at some games (not just the good or bad ones trotted out by folks on one side or the other). There are some issues but his upside is huge. He could be a turd, but he could also be one of those dominant players. I surely hope the Dolphins don’t pass up another legit franchise QB to find some guy with less talent in the later rounds.

  40. simplesimon1 says: Apr 26, 2011 4:52 PM

    I don’t smoke it but most everybody I know does. It’s not a big deal. I think many would be shocked to find out how many “upper class” people smoke weed. Stop the prohibition against pot and stop the real drugs.
    Some “upper class” people smoke weed. But some don’t like weed. They like liquids, pills, or crystals. Prohibition doesn’t stop them, and never will. You can’t stop anything if there is a market for it.

  41. tryagainplease,

    That still has nothing to do with race. Josh Freeman didn’t get tagged with drug rumors. Therefore, I don’t get any point in bringing race up in this one.

    Mallet’s public intoxication arrest isn’t what has raised this question, but rather he’s been pegged as a party guy with low work ethic and depending on who you believe, a cocaine problem for a while now.

    Those are tangible concerns, similar to what the Raiders ignored with Jamarcus Russell because the lazy, club hopping, drug rumors were out there about him, too.

    That’s the difference between the criticism Newton has faced from dumb stuff like his “phoniness” and smile, although the questions about him stealing the laptop or the stuff with his dad are valid concerns but are often never the concerns raised but rather the phantom stuff about him being phoney or complacent from “gut feelings” and other nonsense.

    However,, I think these rumors about Mallet trump anything anybody has going on in this draft, and these rumors have been out there about him way before a couple of months ago, going back to his Michigan days.

    That’s an objective opinion because I have no rooting interest for either, I like Mallet’s game and definitely doesn’t involve race because I’d be scared of taking any of these QBs and depending on them being the “guy.” Plus, I think Christian ponder will be the best in the class anyway.

    Again, I don’t care as I just like good football and want all these guys to reach their potential, but I have to point out the discrepencies in judgements and what’s people’s motivations when i see it.

    By the way, Mayock has no credibility with me anymore because as much as he’sdinged Mallet and Newton, both far superior from their tape, as he’s fond of saying, than Blaine Gabbert, he’s shown where his biases lie, and if we’re going on game tape, it doesn’t have any part in this equation.

  42. realfootballfan- we just disagree then because i most certainly think the way ryan talks is 50% cause of the scrutiny he gets. and it’s funny to me – an arkansas fan who’s quite a web hopper- hadn’t heard anything but stupid comments about him ‘looking’ ‘talking’ like a drug user before a few months ago.

    and i don’t hate cam and i hope he does well in the nfl but dude stole a laptop and threw it out the window with cops, his dad tried to sell him and it wouldn’t be the most shocking revelation to find out he actually got paid, etc etc etc- it’s not like his nose is completely clean. so please don’t insinuate ryan has more skeletons or even half that cam does.

  43. tryagainplease,

    I think maybe we’re talking about two separate issues. In the past when Jamie Dukes made those statements about Mallet’s heightened scrutiny because of his urban way of speech and such, I agreed that those kind of perceptions absolutely were rooted in ignorant biases. It’s a reason that I’m rooting for the kid because I feel it’s unfair.

    However, the basis of his drug rumors have followed him for a while, just like the work ethic issues.

    Also, in the last response to you, I explicitly said that Newton’s issues with the laptop and what happened with his father would be better talking points for his detractors rather than “gut feelings” and other such nonsense that just makes the people pushing those points of view look like they’re in the bag for somebody else’s agent.

  44. I could be wrong but didn’t Mallet admit it to teams…whatever the “use” was? If so, that would be documented evidence because it would have come straight from him.

    Either way if it’s weed I doubt it affects him much. Calvin Johnson and one other fairly high (haha) profile player who was drafted recently admitted they smoked weed(think he and the other guy failed the test at the Combine) and it didn’t hurt their draft stock one bit. I think the main thing is that they admitted it. So if Mallet handled it the right way which was to discuss it with teams, and it meshes with their own research and it’s in his past, he probably won’t suffer much from it draft stock wise IMO.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!