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Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Troubled Henry could still be playing


Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

Henry
The arrest of former Bills, Broncos and Titans running back Travis Henry is not only a sad tale, but it is an unnecessary one.

Travis Henry should have been taking his one day off from being an NFL running back Tuesday and preparing to face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rather than being chased by DEA agents after an alleged major drug transaction Tuesday evening.

Henry, who will be 30 later this month, should still be playing in the NFL. Instead, he sits in a federal jail cell.

What a waste. But we've seen Henry take major steps toward first wasting his NFL career.

Henry seemed to have gotten his off-field life together in the winter of 2007 when Denver gave him a $22 million-plus contract. Denver had the intentions of making Henry their next star running back. It was a great fit. He was a perfect piece for Denver's zone-blocking scheme. He knew it. Henry often said he thought he was made to be a Denver running back.

After the first month of the 2007 season, things were going as planned as Henry was leading the NFL in rushing. Things started fell apart last October for Henry, and now we can call it the beginning of the end. He tested positive for marijuana use and was subject to a one-year NFL suspension.

After an eight-week battle, Henry had the suspension overturned on a technicality. Still, the distraction hurt the team, and Henry was injured for much of the second half of the season.

He took a major pay cut to stick with Denver this year. However, he was never motivated and he was cut after he stopped showing up for work. He was then suspended for a year by the league for marijuana use.

Out of a job and banned for a year, it was assumed around the league this three-time 1,000-yard rusher's NFL career was over.

Now, three months later, his life as a free man is in jeopardy.

What a waste.