Several teams passed on Lawrence Phillips before the St. Louis Rams scooped him up in the 1996 draft with the sixth overall pick. The teams' concerns had nothing to do with his prospects on the gridiron; they related to his character. In a well-publicized incident at the University of Nebraska, the running back dragged his then-girlfriend down a flight of stairs by her hair. Unfortunately, that was just the beginning.
Phillips was a solid player, scoring 12 touchdowns during two NFL seasons but he was released by the Rams for insubordination. After stints with the Miami Dolphins and in NFL Europe, he returned stateside with the San Francisco 49ers but was cut for skipping practice.
In August 2005, after losing a pickup football game to a group of teenagers, he intentionally hit them with his car. That same month, he assaulted his girlfriend on two separate occasions. He was convicted on seven felony charges stemming from the incidents and was sentenced to a total of more than 31 years in prison.