2020 NFL Draft: League advising agents of prospects to scrub social media accounts, per report


You’ve seen it happen before. A person rises to prominence only to find themselves trapped in controversy because of an old social media post they had long forgotten about, or simply don’t remember hitting send on in the first place. NFL prospects are not at all immune to this, and few know this better than former first-round pick Nick Bosa. It was only one year ago when the former Ohio State star was the center of a questions that surrounded deleted controversial tweets and even likes of Instagram posts that contained racial and homophobic slurs, and Bosa admitted his agents scrubbed his social media accounts — noting they “had to” because he “might end up in San Francisco.”

That turned out to be exactly right, because none of it impacted general manager John Lynch’s decision to add Bosa to the 49ers roster with the second-overall pick, but his story serves as yet another cautionary tale as the league begins to take a proactive approach to such matters. With the 2020 NFL Draft rapidly approaching, and in a fully virtual capacity due to the coronavirus (COVID-19 outbreak), the league is reportedly advising agents to do for this new class of prospects what Bosa’s agents did for him in 2019; per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.

Given the age of NFL prospects, there’s always an inherent danger they may have tweeted or posted comments in their youth — read: junior high and/or high school years — that could return to take a chunk out of their draft stock. That’s the reality of the world today though, with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat and a slew of other prominent social media platforms encouraging the world to express itself on a massive social media stage. 

And with current shelter-in-place orders enacted across the country due to COVID-19, prospects have that much more time on their hands to potentially post something that can be viewed as offensive.

Poorly-aged and/or deleted tweets [re]surfacing for NFL prospects has almost become a perennial thing, from Bosa in 2019 to quarterback Josh Allen in 2018, and so on — the latter apologizing after tweets surfaced on draft day of him using a racial slur.

“If I could go back in time, I would never have done this in a heartbeat,” Allen said at the time, via ESPN. “At the time, I obviously didn’t know how harmful it was and now has become. I hope you know and others know I’m not the type of person — I was 14 and 15 that I tweeted so recklessly. … I don’t want that to be the impression of who I am, because that is not me. 

“I apologize for what I did.”

And not every resurfaced post is offensive on a racial, sexual or political level. Some are simply kids being emotional about the sport itself, such as when a 19-year-old Dak Prescott — a rabid lover of the Dallas Cowboys in his youth — got upset at a performance by Tony Romo in 2012 and made his feelings known on Twitter. Of course, by the time Prescott became the Cowboys fourth-round pick four years later, he felt differently and was ecstatic to play alongside and learn from the four-time Pro Bowl quarterback. 

“I was just being a frustrated fan at the time,” Prescott eventually said of the tweet. “I’m behind [Romo] 100 percent.”

Unless prospects in 2020 want to answer for the sins of their younger selves like Bosa and Allen, or even to a lesser degree like Prescott, the NFL suggests agents grab a digital bucket and Brillo and start scrubbing. 





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