I-Team: Ex-Bear Sam Hurd to plead guilty in drug conspiracy case

Chicago Bears wide receiver Sam Hurd, right, smiles as he autographs for fans before NFL football training camp Sunday, July 31, 2011, at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Ill. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

April 9, 2013 10:00:00 PM PDT
Former Chicago Bear wide receiver Sam Hurd will plead guilty Thursday afternoon in a federal drug conspiracy case.

Hurd had basically been gang tackled by his co-defendants in the cocaine conspiracy.

All had turned on Hurd and decided to cooperate with the government and were going to testify against him at trial that was set to open on Monday.

Now there will be no trial, only a court hearing at 2 p.m. Thursday. According to his attorney, Hurd will enter a guilty plea to one count of conspiring to sell cocaine and marijuana.

Hurd came to the Bears from the Dallas Cowboys and according to federal agents wanted to set up a drug network between the two cities.

He was arrested outside a Rosemont steakhouse just before Christmas 2011 following a meeting with a federal informant and an undercover officer.

They said he had cut a deal to buy multi-kilos of cocaine and marijuana every week and oversee a network of drug dealers.

Even though his football career is over, he'll have a felony on his record and could go to prison when he is sentenced probably this summer.

The plea deal is likely to eliminate any chance that the names of Hurd's clients will ever be made public.

From the beginning of the case the NFL, the Bears and Hurd's attorneys

all denied that he had sold drugs to other football players. But with no trial and no evidence presented, just who the clients were will remain a mystery.

The Bears cut Hurd shortly after his arrest by federal agents. He had been free on bond but was ordered back into custody when authorities say he failed a drug test. He faces up to ten years in prison and a $10 million fine.