Five Most Controversial Players in NFL History


It seems like fame and controversy fit together perfectly nowadays, and this list of the five most controversial players in NFL history is no exception. From strange behaviors, run-ins with the law, and even murder, our favorite athletes have shown time and time again that they are far from perfect. And as much as we’d like them to be the perfect players we envision them as, some people just end up as bad apples.

Randy Moss

Moss has been dubbed one of the most dominant wide receivers in the league at one point, but that didn’t stop him from causing a whole load of controversy. Even before he entered the NFL, he was charged with battery for participating in a racially motivated fight. Shortly after that, he violated his probation and served more time in jail. Randy Moss has been fined for his angry outbursts, forced to take anger management, and has been involved in even more fighting. He’s walked off the field, mooned fans, and even hit a traffic cop. It seems that this controversial player can’t seem to stay out of trouble.

Michael Vick

This is one of today’s most controversial players and it’s easy to see why. Some of this NFL player’s controversy includes being sued by a woman for allegedly giving her a STD, fined for making obscene gestures at fans, and being accused of trying to take a water bottle on a plane that contained a hidden compartment. But what Michael Vick is most known for is his involvement and conviction involving dog-fighting at his mansion. His blatant abuse of animals has garnered some much warranted attention, with some people (and fans alike) believing he should have received harsher punishments and banned from ever playing football again.

Lawrence Taylor

Defensive player Lawrence Taylor is remembered as one of the best in the NFL, but also one of the most controversial. Taylor’s life seemed to spiral quickly, against the hopes of NFL fans everywhere. He has had multiple drug/DWI arrests and even pleaded guilty to sexual misconduct with a 16-year-old. His failed acting career didn’t help his case any, either. Taylor has been featured on documentaries and TV shows, showcasing his strange views and public controversies. He has even been named one of the most hated NFL players of all time by USA Today.

OJ Simpson

When you think of NFL controversy, OJ Simpson is probably the first name that pops into your mind. He was part of one of the biggest scandals to ever hit professional sports. His murder trial was one of the most publicized in history, with the televised police chase involving him adding to the fire. Simpson was a Heisman Trophy winner and a NFL MVP, but no one cared about that when the murder trials started. To the shock of millions of Americans, he was acquitted of murdering his wife (even though the evidence seemed stacked against him). After the trial he has had a slew of other controversies, including more run-ins with the law.

Rae Carruth

Unfortunately, Carruth isn’t much remembered for his talent with the Panthers. Instead he is remembered for the controversy surrounding him. He was a first-round draft pick who had a lot of promise, but that all ended when he was convicted of conspiracy to commit murder. His girlfriend at the time was shot 4 times in a drive-by shooting, while she was pregnant. The girlfriend later died, but the child survived. After posting bail, Rae Carruth took off and became a wanted fugitive. He was found guilty of the charges and sentenced to 18-24 years in prison.

For the NFL players on this list, being good people and good players is just not possible. From their odd behaviors, actions, and even crimes, it’s easy to see why these 5 players are considered the most controversial in NFL’s long history.

You may also like:

50 Most Affordable Urban Schools for Sports Management