ESPN The Mag Story About Sister-Humping NFL Prospect Will Break Your Heart

Remember Tony Washington? The Abilene Christian lineman who mashed uglies with his sister? He went undrafted in the draft and has yet to be signed as a free agent? Why is a talented o-line prospect getting the cold shoulder from the NFL?

In an expansive feature in ESPN The Magazine, writer Allison Glock sheds new light on Washington's difficult upbringing. The whole thing is worth a read — Washington comes off as about as well-adjusted as anyone in his position could be — but pay special attention to this quote, from an unnamed NFL source:

One front-office source from a team that dropped Washington off its draft board says the player didn't seem to show enough remorse. More to the point, the team didn't want to deal with the complications of having a sex offender on the roster. "He'd be a media distraction," the source says. "You have to ask, is he worth the headache?"

Forget the ongoing hilarity of NFL people trying to divine the level of someone else's remorse; NFL teams deal with the complications of having killers on the roster. I'm sure a team could handle a guy like Washington, who didn't break a law so much as violate a cultural taboo (the sex was consensual; Washington was 16 and his sister — who spoke to Glock — was 15). His crime was to be sexually weird in the first degree. The league is full of people who've committed far less forgivable offenses.

Washington might've gone as high as the second round, Glock figures, but instead he's scrounging around for work, getting the same rough treatment from the UFL that he did from the NFL. "We just need to know the ramifications of putting him on the roster," one skeptical scout says. If the guy didn't get a shot because he made some front-office people think of that one book and cringe a little, well, that would be a crime.

Unforgiven: Would-be draftee Tony Washington's NFL future is being derailed by his sad past [ESPN]