As fans, for the most part, all we care about from our team’s players is their stats and how they help the team win. If Player A is the nicest guy in the world and can rush for 50 yards but Player B is a jerk and can rush for 100 yards, we’ll take Player B, no questions asked.
For the most part, the players on this list were talented football players in the prime of their careers and managed to stay out of trouble…until they retired.
Maybe you weren’t the biggest Brett Favre fan while he was still playing (I sure wasn’t). But until his first retirement (following the 2007 season), he was a well-enough behaved player off the football field, as well as being a legend on the field.
And then the trouble started. First, there was the trouble with Favre wanting to return to the Green Bay Packers but management insisting they were sticking with Favre’s successor, Aaron Rodgers. There were the pictures Favre sent to an employee in the Jets organization, and the scandal that ensued from that. And most recently were Favre’s comments implying that Rodgers fell into a lucky situation in Green Bay and that Rodgers should have even won a Super Bowl sooner.
Typical Favre doing anything he can to be in the spotlight.
I never had a problem with Tiki Barber when he was an NFL player. Even as an Eagles fan, I liked and respected him (maybe because I am a twin too). Barber was still an extremely talented NFL running back even into his early thirties until he abruptly announced his retirement.
The New York Giants went on to win the Super Bowl the next season without Barber, although he managed to keep himself in the news by claiming Eli Manning’s previous attempts to take charge at team meetings were comical, according to an article published on NBC Sports. Barber also openly criticized Tom Coughlin’s coaching style, saying Coughlin was outcoached after the Giants’ playoff loss in 2005.
Coughlin got the last laugh though when he and the Giants won Super Bowl XLII without Barber, and then Barber had a failed attempt at a comeback to the NFL this past fall.
While he was a receiver in the NFL, Marvin Harrison was smooth, consistent, and Peyton Manning’s number one go-to guy. Harrison made eight Pro Bowls and will almost assuredly be a Hall of Famer one day.
After he retired, Harrison was involved in an incident with a gun and a drug dealer, in which Harrison was alleged to have shot at a dealer named Dwight Dixon. Harrison was sued, news that tarnished his legacy, especially for a player always thought to be so mild-mannered as Harrison.
During his four years as an underachieving wide receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles, Freddie Mitchell liked to talk, but then again, lots of guys talk.
The only problem was that Mitchell couldn’t back it up, and in what turned out to be the final game of his unproductive NFL career (the 24-21 Super Bowl loss to the New England Patriots), Mitchell caught fewer passes (1) than the guy who covered him (Rodney Harrison, 2).
The sports blog Deadspin reported that Mitchell went on to be a substitute teacher and was fired after asking girls for their phone number. Mitchell then was detained when seven pounds of marijuana was delivered to a barbecue business he owned in the summer of 2008, and a year later, he was pulled over for speeding and due to outstanding warrants for failure to pay child support, he was arrested and released on $250,000 bail
Henry was a star running back in the early 2000s, rushing for 1,438 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2002 and rejuvenating his career in 2006 with a third (and final) 1,000 yard campaign to go with seven scores on the ground.
Off the field, Henry isn’t so much a star. Reports from a New York Times article published two years ago said Henry is the father of nine children to eight different women; now apparently he is up to 11 children with 10 different women, according to his Wikipedia page.
Along with the multiple failures in his paying his child support, suspensions for marijuana use, and a recent cocaine trafficking incident that earned him three years in prison, Henry isn’t the type of role model young children should choose.
A talented receiver back in the 1980s, Collinsworth totaled 6,698 receiving yards and 36 touchdowns in a nine-year career with the Cincinnati Bengals.
Now as an analyst on NBC’s Sunday Night Football, Collinsworth may be my least favorite commentator in all of sports. He strikes me as unintelligent and extremely negative, and the majority of people I know can’t stand him.
Maybe he's just bitter that he never won a Super Bowl.
This one is a little too obvious. O.J. was a Hall of Fame running back in the 1970s for the Buffalo Bills, but it was what he did after he retired that made him even more famous.
We all know of O.J.’s murder, the famous trial, the slow speed car chase, and the lack of conviction that allowed O.J. to walk free. O.J. went as far as to attempt to write a book, If I Did It, detailing how he would have done the murders…if he had done them.
O.J. is currently serving a 33-year sentence in prison for numerous felonies, including armed robberies and kidnapping.