Ex-Dallas Cowboys player Sam Hurd was sentenced Wednesday to 15 years in prison for his role in a drug-distribution scheme.
Federal prosecutors wanted a life sentence for Hurd based on the volume of cocaine he was accused of trying to distribute.
Hurd pleaded guilty in April to one count of attempting to buy and distribute cocaine and marijuana.
The 28-year-old recently told Sports Illustrated he got into drugs while rehabbing an injury, and that he sold drugs to, or did drugs with, 20 to 25 Dallas Cowboys teammates.
Hurd had just signed a more than $4 million contract with the Chicago Bear when the government says he was tackled by his own actions. Undercover video obtained by Sports Illustrated shows Hurd leaving a Chicago-area steakhouse with a kilo of cocaine the night he was arrested.
That was in December 2011, and Hurd appeared in court the next day. In October of 2012, while out on bond, Hurd was arrested again, accused of trying to deal drugs with a cousin, Tyrone Chavul, and Toby Lujan.
Lujan reportedly told federal agents it was Hurd who asked him about a cocaine source.
The Sports Illustrated report includes pictures of the bag Hurd left Morton's Steakhouse with, and the brick of cocaine inside the bag, which was provided by undercover federal agents.
Hurd said he was never involved in moving cocaine, but two others have said their involvement in trying to secure cocaine was to benefit Hurd.
Hurd did smoke marijuana, and reportedly a lot. Sources say he was even an investor in a "legal medical marijuana clinic" in California.
Hurd told Sports Illustrated he was "highly selective" in the weed he smoked, saying it was like wine.
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