The Denver Broncos have more grease fires right now than the kitchen of a seedy Mexican restaurant with a drunk chef. Franchise QB Jay Cutler is demanding a trade and Pro Bowl wide receiver Brandon Marshall is awaiting the league’s wrath following his fourth arrest since 2006. And everyone seems to hate the new coach.
And now their big free agent signing is in hot water. The PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER says that ex-Eagles running back Correll Buckhalter has been named by an alleged drug dealer as a client during his trial. The prosecutor in the case of the wonderfully named Styles N. Beckles (no, not this Stylez) mentioned Buckhalter and former Temple football player Keita Crespina as two athletes to whom Beckles had sold drugs.
Although no charges have been filed against Buckhalter, even the allegations could be very bad news for him. He has a history of issues with marijuana, including a suspension in 2001 after getting arrested with two teammates for smoking pot in a car driving on South Street. And if we know anything about NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, it’s that past history matters, and you don’t necessarily need to be convicted to get in trouble with the league.
Obviously, this isn’t what the Broncos wanted to see out of a player who they signed to a four-year, $10 million contract in the off season. Buckhalter’s agent told the DENVER POST that he had spoken to his client, who assured him he was innocent. Even though the denial sounds less than rock solid:
“I spoke to Correll about it and there’s no validity to it as far as he’s concerned,” Buckhalter’s agent J.R. Rickert said. “I don’t know the circumstances as to how or why he dropped his name. All I know is I asked Correll, ‘Are you involved in this at all?’ And he said, ‘Nope, there’s no validity to it.’ ”
“As far as he’s concerned”? That’s hardly a ringing denouncement of the claims. Keep in mind that the Broncos have a sordid past with running backs and drugs, with Mike Anderson having been suspended by the league for four games after a positive test for pot in 2003, and Travis Henry ducking a year-long suspension for the same offense in 2007.