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On Sunday, Josh Brent was released from jail on a $500,000 bond. The Dallas Cowboys nose tackle was arrested after an early Saturday morning crash that killed his practice squad teammate, Jerry Brown, Jr. Brent was allegedly driving his car while drunk.
In 2012 alone, 14 other football players were arrested on drunken-driving charges. Only one player was cut from his team because of his charge, though he later found a job playing for a different team.
In September, Atlanta Falcons running back Michael Turner was arrested for driving under the influence after he led the Falcons to a 27-21 win in Week 2. He was also speeding, allegedly driving 97 mph in a 65 zone. Despite the charges, he started in the Falcons’ next game, against the San Diego Chargers.
Two months earlier, Kenny Britt was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated. The wide receiver still played in all Tennessee Titans games this season.
That same month, defensive end Robert Quinn was involved in a Missouri crash on an exit ramp. He was released on bail, and hasn’t missed a beat on the football field.
In Oakland, Marshawn Lynch was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence. Despite this being the latest in a slew of run-ins with the law, Lynch wasn’t suspended.
Tampa Bay cornerback Eric Wright was arrested after a crash in Los Angeles, also in July.
Aaron Berry was allegedly driving under the influence in June when the cornerback struck two cars and fled the scene on foot. The Detroit Lions cut Berry, but he was later re-signed by the New York Jets.
A Super Bowl winner, New York Giants offensive lineman David Diehl was arrested in New York after his BMW hit several parked cars in Queens. He was released from police custody, though his license was suspended.
The fifth overall pick in the NFL draft, Justin Blackmon was arrested for an “aggravated DUI” in Oaklahoma. The wide receiver was allegedly driving with a blood alcohol level at three times the legal limit.
Jerome Felton, the Minnesota Vikings and former Detroit Lions fullback, was arrested at a McDonald’s drive-through in June. This wasn’t the first time that Felton was arrested for a DWI within the past decade.
In May, another Lion, Nick Fairley, was arrested for driving 100 mph on I-10 in Alabama. It was his second arrest in two months. His defense wants Fairley to participate in a DUI diversion program:
If Fairley is accepted and completes the program – usually lasting six months to a year – he would end up with no criminal conviction on his record.
While Fairley is awaiting word on whether or not he’ll have to serve time, he’s had 27 tackles and 5.5 sacks on the season.
Brandon Meriweather, who signed a two-year deal with the Washington Redskins this offseason, was arrested after speeding on a Virginia interstate. He was given a 180-day suspended sentence, fined $300, and placed on probation. He’ll miss the rest of the season, but that’s due to surgery.
Oakland Raiders wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey pleaded no contest to his April 7 DUI. He faces three years of probation, but no jail time.
Denver Broncos running back Knowshon Moreno was arrested in February. His Bentley was clocked at 70 mph in a 45-mph work zone. His license plates read “SAUCED.” After starting in the first two weeks of the season, he was inactive until Nov. 25.
49ers linebacker Aldon Smith had his January DUI charge downgraded to a “reckless driving” charge after enrolling in a DUI diversion program.
The NFL players’ union has a program that allows drunken players to get a ride home.