04/28 22:46 CDT Laremy Tunsil's slide in draft ends when Dolphins pick him
Laremy Tunsil's slide in draft ends when Dolphins pick him
By STEVEN WINE
AP Sports Writer
MIAMI (AP) --- Tackle Laremy Tunsil's surprising and costly slide in the NFL
draft ended with the 13th pick Thursday, where he was taken by the Miami
Tunsil was once considered a potential No. 1 overall pick, but he fell after a
bizarre video was posted on his Twitter account minutes before the start of the
draft showed a person smoking from a mask equipped with a bong.
Dolphins general manager Chris Grier said the team had been aware of the
video's existence well before the draft. Grier and Tunsil both said the video
was two years old.
The approximately 30-second video was quickly deleted from Tunsil's Twitter
account, which was then deactivated.
"Man, it was a mistake," Tunsil said. "It happened years ago. Somebody hacked
my Twitter account, and that's how it got on there."
Tunsil said his Instagram account was also hacked, and he didn't know who was
responsible. He said he wasn't angry, even though his tumble in the draft cost
him millions of dollars.
He chuckled several times as he discussed the situation an hour after finally
"I don't know why they hacked my account. I didn't do nothing to nobody. I'm
harmless," he said.
"I'm ready to play football, man. It's a love for the game. It's not all about
The pick created a buzz on social media, including tweets of the team logo with
a mask over the dolphin's head while using a bong. Tunsil said he doesn't have
a drug problem, but the video reinforced his off-the-field issues.
Tunsil said he took money from coaches at Mississippi. He sat out the 2015
season's first seven games after the NCAA ruled he received improper benefits,
including the use of three loaner cars over a six-month period.
His stepfather reportedly filed a lawsuit against him Tuesday related to a
confrontation in June, when the men were both charged with domestic violence
against each other. Those charges were eventually dismissed.
Tunsil attended the draft in Chicago and waited more than 90 minutes until his
name was finally called. He then exhaled and shook his head, and after
accepting congratulations from Commissioner Roger Goodell, Tunsil managed a
"Man, it's just a crazy world, and things happen for a reason," Tunsil said.
"I'm glad to be in Miami. I'm going to work my butt off man and give it
everything I've got."
Tackle wasn't considered a priority for the Dolphins, but they decided the 6-5,
310-pound Tunsil was too good to pass on. He was a three-year starter at Ole
Grier said the Dolphins knew the story behind the video, but declined to share
it. He said the team had heard rumors regarding Tunsil's background, and
careful research allayed concerns.
"He's a smart kid," Grier said. "He's very football-intelligent. This guy is
one of those grinders. There's no doubt this guy loves football, and football
is very important to him."
When asked if Tunsil loves football more than he loves drugs, Grier said, "Yes."
Miami made Dion Jordan the overall No. 3 pick in the 2013 draft, and he sat out
last season serving a suspension for violating the NFL's drug policy.
Tunsil's situation is different, said Grier, who added the pick prompted a
celebration in the team's draft room. Grier said the Dolphins had Tunsil ranked
No. 2 overall and didn't expect him to fall to them.
Others were surprised by his tumble, too.
"If we took players off the board because they smoked pot in college or
marijuana, half the board would be gone," Detroit Lions GM Bob Quinn said.
Tunsil said the Dolphins didn't need to worry about his character.
"I'm going to show everybody what type of person I am, despite all the
mistakes," he said. "They're getting a great man. I'm going to put everything
on the line. I'm going to give it my all. They don't have to worry about
Tunsil was a prep star at Columbia High School in Lake City, Florida, and
remains close to his small hometown near Jacksonville.
AP Sports Writer Larry Lage in Detroit contributed to this report.
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