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Mike Brown: Bengals wary of Hernandez’s character, Gronk’s back

Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkowski

New England Patriots tight ends Aaron Hernandez (81) and Rob Gronkowski (87) share a laugh while sitting on the bench during their first NFL preseason football game against the New Orleans Saints in Foxborough, Mass., Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)


In the first round of the 2010 NFL draft, the Bengals selected tight end Jermaine Gresham. In the second round of that draft, the Patriots drafted tight end Rob Gronkowski. And in the fourth round of that draft, the Patriots drafted tight end Aaron Hernandez.

Obviously, no one could have imagined that Hernandez would become a murder suspect, but Bengals owner Mike Brown told Alex Marvez of that Hernandez’s character was the reason the Bengals didn’t want him.

“That one is no secret. We just stayed away from it,” Brown said about Hernandez. “We didn’t question the playing ability. But we went for Gresham.”

Brown also said the Bengals removed Gronkowski from their draft board “because he had a bad back.” Gronkowski is currently recovering from back surgery.

The Bengals are feeling pretty good about the decision to go with Gresham now.