Former LSU Cornerback Tyrann Mathieu Arrested, NFL Future in Doubt

Matt MillerNFL Draft Lead WriterOctober 25, 2012

It seems like every few months we're writing an article updating the world on Tyrann Mathieu's draft stock. This might be the final nail in the coffin. Or rather, it should be.

Mathieu was arrested on Thursday, Oct. 25 and charged with "simple marijuana possession" after officers were dispatched to Mathieu's shared apartment in response to "a complaint about a man attempting to force his way in to the complex through a security gate."

Once officers arrived at that man's door, Mathieu answered. According to the report, officers smelled marijuana and obtained consent from the former LSU cornerback to search the apartment. Inside, they found 10 bags of marijuana, a digital scale and a marijuana grinder.

Mathieu was recently kicked off the LSU football team after failing a drug test, but the standout cornerback was back at LSU this fall attending classes, hoping to be reinstated in the spring for the 2013 season. Mathieu can stop worrying about getting back on the team and start worrying about his future.

At this point, no one can speak with any certainty about what is going on with Tyrann Mathieu. He had spent time with John Lucas, who was thought to be acting as a mentor to the troubled star. That apparently didn't work. Now, Mathieu's freedom is in jeopardy and, on a less important level, his football future.

Whether Mathieu faces jail time or is later exonerated, this is a major problem for his NFL draft stock. A player with so many issues in the past is unlikely to see the inside of an NFL locker room. Many are quick to compare Mathieu to Janoris Jenkins, who was kicked out of Florida and rehabbed his way into the second round of the 2012 draft. The major difference is that Jenkins' issues stopped when he left Florida. 

Mathieu doesn't have the benefit of the doubt when it comes to his character. Unlike Jenkins, he isn't spending the 2012 season playing well and staying out of trouble. What should have been a wake-up call for Mathieu has done nothing to change the destructive path he's walking down. 

At some point, character has to matter. NFL front offices are notorious for picking talent over integrity, but a player with so many off-field issues cannot be trusted to perform at a high level. NFL teams should take note, and when the April draft rolls around, they should stay away.

Taking stock of Mathieu's NFL draft chances today, he's facing a serious rebuilding of his image and reputation in the coming months. Mathieu has an uphill battle to climb as a mid-round draft prospect.