Sometimes in the professional sports world, having all the money you can ever imagine doesn’t guarantee you will make the right decisions. Now, some athletes that have millions of dollars do live good lives and make the right decisions for themselves and their families. Look at guys like Steph Curry and LeBron James. They’re two of the best players in the NBA, both have multiple NBA championships, both have MVP awards, and millions of dollars. Yet, they still are able to fully support their families and be the father figures that their wives expect for their kids. Unfortunately, with the good people in professional sports comes the bad. The bad ones decide to do things that are questionable with the law and find themselves behind bars in prison.
These NBA and NFL players have millions of dollars to do with whatever they so please. But sometimes, they spend that money on the wrong things. Look at a guy like Aaron Hernandez. He made millions of dollars with the Patriots, yet still made bad decisions and landed himself in jail in life before his demise. But what about some of the names we wondered about where they are now and then realized they are behind bars? This list takes a look at that in both the NBA and the NFL. So let’s examine eight forgotten NFL players and seven forgotten NBA players that are still serving time.
15. NFL: Keith Wright
This last NFL former player has too many charges to be listed and too little of NFL stats to even be posted. He was originally playing for the Houston Texans. But then, he made pit stops in Indianapolis, Tampa Bay (twice), and Arizona. Despite all of his time in the NFL, he just couldn’t stay away from making bad decisions and getting himself in trouble.
Keith Wright had a list of 19 charges going against him after his life in the NFL. He was accused of such things as armed robbery, kidnapping, and first degree burglary just to name a few of them. He finally was booked and prosecuted in 2012 and given a 234 year prison sentence. No, that is not a mistype; his crimes amount to a 234-year concurrent prison sentence.
14. NBA: Tate George
This NBA player got involved with the wrong set of people to make some more money off of a pyramid scheme. He previously played four seasons in the NBA with the New Jersey Nets and the Milwaukee Bucks. He averaged four points, two assists, and one rebound per game. He did shoot a career 41% field goal percentage, but he didn’t shoot as well with his getting rich quick Ponzi scheme.
Tate George had a ton of charges come against him after his NBA career was over. He had federal wire fraud charges back in 2014. They finally sentenced George in 2016 to nine years in prison for his involvement in the Ponzi scheme as a whole. The worst part is when he leaves prison, he has to pay $2.5 million in restitution. He could have just kept playing basketball to make money as opposed to trying a get rich quick scheme like he did and then got caught for.
13. NFL: Darren Sharper
This next NFL player might have had one of the best careers out of anybody on this list. He was one of the best safeties around in the 2000s. He was a five time Pro Bowl free safety as well as being selected as a First-Team All-Pro once. He played for the Packers, Vikings, and Saints throughout the course of his career until 2010. Although he was a beast on the field, nothing could keep him from doing malicious acts off of the field.
Darren Sharper was quite the player during his time in the pros. But he also had a dark and dangerous side nobody knew of. He was accused of sexual assault multiple times throughout his time off the field, even during his time as an NFL broadcaster. He could come out of prison within the next 10 years, but only if everything works out in his favor.
12. NBA: Edward Lee Johnson Jr.
This next NBA player definitely is up there for one of the most disgusting criminals on this list. But during his time in the NBA, he was known as “Fast Eddie”. This guy was a two time All-Star during his nine seasons with the Atlanta Hawks in the early 1980s. He also spent a season with Cleveland and one more with Seattle as well. While he was known as fast on the court, he couldn’t run fast enough away from the truth off of the court.
Edward Lee Johnson Jr. enjoyed a solid 11 year NBA career before retiring. But he made the horrific decision of sexual battery and molestation of a child under 12 years old. He was convicted and sentenced for his horrific crimes in 2008. He was given a life sentence without parole. It serves him right for committing a crime of that magnitude.
11. NFL: Rae Carruth
This next NFL former player is probably the most well known when it comes to prison sentences of players that played in the 1990’s. He played with the Carolina Panthers for three seasons. He caught four career touchdown passes while playing in 22 career games. He could have played more years. But unfortunately, he had a very messy situation with his girlfriend that ended horribly for all involved.
Rae Carruth is one of the first names you think of when it comes to former NFL players still in prison. His girlfriend was pregnant at the time when somebody Carruth supposedly hired shot his girlfriend. The baby was delivered via emergency c-section and miraculously survived. Carruth was given a 24 year sentence. The scary part is that Carruth could be released this upcoming year and who knows what he could be capable of doing next in the outside world.
10. NBA: Javarius Crittenton
This last former NBA player only played two seasons in the NBA. During his brief stint, he never spent a full season with one team. He split time with the Lakers and Grizzlies in 2007-08 and then spent time with the Grizzlies and Wizards in the 2008-09 season. In 113 career games, he averaged five points along with two rebounds and two assists per game. Although his NBA career was considerably insignificant, his criminal record definitely could get easily noticed.
Javarius Crittenton killed a 22-year-old mother in 2011, whom was later revealed to be the wrong target. Crittenton had been trying to take out someone who had robbed him, and the mother was mistargeted. This was only the beginning of his troubling future. He was later on arrested for selling various banned substances. He finally was put away for a long sentence when he was convicted of manslaughter with a weapon and aggravated assault with a firearm. In 2015, he was given a 30 year sentence which he still serves today.
9. NFL: Eric Naposki
This next former NFL player definitely had an interesting career when he played. He only played for two seasons in 1988 and 1989. In 1988, he played for the New England Patriots. In 1989, he started out with the Indianapolis Colts, but then went back to New England. Overall, he only played in five games in those two seasons. He tried playing in a few other leagues before he hung up his cleats for good. But his biggest act of violence didn’t come on the football field.
Eric Naposki is a dark figure. He is currently serving a life sentence without parole for first degree murder. He killed the boyfriend of a woman he had a romantic interest in. This was back in 1995 and he wasn’t arrested and put away until 2009.
8. NBA: Jason Miskiri
This former NBA player still serving jail time is a man that made it to the NBA for one game. Seriously, he only played in one game while having one assist and shooting one three point shot. He played for the Charlotte Hornets during the 1999-00 season, but apparently wasn’t one of the big named players for that Hornets team. His name is Jason Miskiri and he definitely didn’t expect his life to turn out how it did.
Miskiri continued to try to play professional basketball by playing in the NBDL for a few years before finally hanging his shoes up in 2005. The trouble for him didn’t start until 2015 until he was arrested and charged with conspiring to possess with intent to distribute more than 1,000 kilos of marijuana. Miskiri was sentenced in December 2015 and received two years for that, but nobody has confirmed if he is out of jail for good yet. Still, he is one of the forgotten NBA guys for good reason.
7. NFL: Robert Rozier
This next former NFL player definitely didn’t have it all there from the start. He played for the L.A. Rams for one season in 1979. He appeared in six games that season, but didn’t have much of an impact on the field. Off of the field, his legacy would be cemented, but not in a good way.
Robert Rozier has had a few run-ins with the law in his life. He was arrested in 1986 where he claimed to have already killed seven people, as part of a mission for a black supremacist group. He was supposed to serve 22 years, but got out after 10 in 1996. However, he was arrested again for check fraud and received a 25 to life sentence which he is still serving today. It just goes to show how quickly life can go for you when you make a few bad decisions.
6. NBA: Tom Payne
This NBA big man used his size in more ways than one. He played one season for the Atlanta Hawks in the 1971-72 season. He appeared in 29 games, while averaging only four points and two rebounds a game. That wasn’t necessarily the numbers the Hawks wanted out of a guy that was 7’2. What the Hawks probably didn’t realize is just how much of a monster Payne was in the outside world.
Payne was arrested in 1972 and served over 10 years. He was released in 1983. But then in 1986, he was once again was convicted of another sexual assault charge and this time was given a 15 to life sentence. His parole was denied in 2016, so he continues to serve time behind bars. It probably is for the best considering he committed the same crime again after serving time for it already.
5. NFL: Dave Meggett
This next NFL player is unlike any of the other athletes covered up to this point. He spent 10 seasons in professional football, was selected to two Pro Bowls, and seemed to be enjoying himself in the NFL. He split his time between the Giants and Patriots before spending his final season with the Jets. Although he was scoring rushing and receiving touchdowns for 10 seasons, he probably didn’t realize what lied ahead for his foreseeable future.
Dave Meggett had a few crimes leading up to his biggest one. He was accused of assault in 1998, and also accused of assaulting his former girlfriend. His biggest crime came in 2010 when he was accused of burglary and criminal sexual conduct. Those two charges got him a 30 year sentence he is currently serving. He could get out as early as 2034 with good behavior.
4. NBA: Anthony Grundy
Drinking and drugs can do horrible things to people in general. When it happens to a professional athlete, it makes fans realize that they’re not super human after all. That was the case for this next former NBA player still serving time behind bars. He played for the Atlanta Hawks during the 2005-06 season after playing college basketball at North Carolina State. He put up four points a game along with a rebound and an assist a game in 12 appearances. But drinking and drugs did a number on him after his brief NBA stint.
Grundy was arrested with DWI charges at least four times that we know of. The fourth time resulted in him getting sentenced in 2017. He was sentenced to two years for the DWI charges along with probation violations and failing to appear in court. This isn’t exactly the fairy tale retirement Grundy probably thought he would have after the NBA.
3. NFL: Darryl Henley
The Rams took a chance with this next player for about six seasons. Throughout his six year career, he was able to bring in 12 interceptions. He also was able to recover a pair of fumbles throughout his career. Although he was causing problems on defense for opposing teams, he was also causing problems for himself off of the field.
Darryl Henley’s first charge was drug trafficking in which he was given a 20 year sentence. But it didn’t just stop there. Henley hired a hitman to take out the judge and witness of his trial. When this was discovered, he was given an additional 21 years in prison to the 20 he already got for the trafficking charge. It probably wasn’t the best idea to have a hitman come in when he was in enough trouble.
2. NBA: Nate Driggers
When you are in the NBA or really any professional sports league, you should be able to play well enough to make enough money to not have to worry about life after the NBA. This former NBA player played for one season with the Boston Celtics in the 1996-97 season. He played in 15 games that season for the Celtics and only averaged two points a game. While he had the chance to play for the Celtics, he could have made some good money. Instead, he tried to make some money on the side in a different way.
Nate Driggers could have had a good career for the Celtics. After the days of the Celtics, he didn’t have much going on until 2017 when he was accused of selling stolen firearms. He was given an eight year prison sentence for the offense. Not exactly the best idea in the world to sell guns, let alone stolen ones.
1. NFL: Sam Hurd
One football player to still be spending time behind bars had it made in the city of Dallas. He could have made a ton of money and retired in nice weather and in the heart of football country. He played five seasons with the Cowboys, and only recorded two touchdown receptions before he went to the Chicago Bears in 2o11. He only caught eight career passes for the Bears before his life took a downward turn.
Sam Hurd just couldn’t seem to get consistent reps in Dallas or Chicago. But he was consistent with his banned substance use as he was arrested on trafficking charges. The sad part is that Hurd was going to be a captain on the special teams unit in Chicago before the time of his arrest. He got 15 years and continues to serve his sentence today.
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