Jets WR David Nelson, former teammate of Aaron Hernandez during their days at the University of Florida, spoke with WFAN’s Boomer and Carton about Hernandez.
Nelson said he was shocked by what has happened with Hernandez.
“You know, there was definitely some tendencies — I’d be lying to you if I said there wasn’t — but it was a huge surprise.”
“I was in Haiti when I got the call (about Hernandez) — somebody from Sports Illustrated called me in Haiti and said ‘I want to talk to you about Aaron Hernandez,’” Nelson continued. “… They told me the situation and it really shocked me. Because this is a guy I saw get into a fight in practice and crying 15 minutes later because he had just hurt his teammate.
“So this was a guy who was extremely sensitive, he was extremely vulnerable, but the thing is, he was who he hung out with. So if he was hanging out with somebody he was very influenced.”
Esiason noted that Hernandez fell to the 4th round of the draft in 2010 because of off the field issues.
“We were always a little afraid when he would go back home (to Connecticut),” Nelson said. “We didn’t know who he was hanging out with … we didn’t know what he was doing. When he was in Gainesville … Coach (Urban) Meyer really did a great job of putting him around people that coach trusted, like Tim (Tebow). Tim and Aaron hung out a lot. Myself and Aaron hung out a lot. So, yeah, you saw some issues with him in college, but they were minor — some drug stuff and that was about it — but nothing to this extreme.
“So he started to hang out with the wrong crowd, get a lot of fame, a lot of money, start to get that ‘I can do whatever I want,’ invincible kind of mentality a lot of NFL guys get, and I think you saw him make a really bad mistake,” Nelson said.
A really bad mistake is quite the understatement of the year.
Hernandez is currently sitting in jail accused of killing Odin Lloyd in June 2013, and indicted on a double-murder drive by.
You can watch the interview below.