Cris Carter on ‘fall guy’ comments: ‘My heart was in the right place’

ESPN NFL analyst Cris Carter addressed his controversial “fall guy” comments for the first time Monday. 
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ESPN NFL analyst Cris Carter addressed his controversial “fall guy” comments for the first time Monday, saying he regretted the statements but felt his “heart was in the right place.” 

Carter began ESPN’s broadcast of Monday Night Countdown by making a statement about his comments. 

“It’s really hard to go through my thought process,” Carter said, as transcribed by “I can’t make an excuse for what my mindset was. My heart was in the right place. I didn’t use words that I was very proud of. It’s not the kind of advice I would offer young people. I would never tell young people to break the law or avoid prosecution. It was bad advice. I really, really regret my words when I heard them come back to me. And more importantly it hurt young people and it hurt them in their approach to the National Football League. So I take it very, very seriously. I do regret that day. I hope moving forward that the NFL still has enough trust in me and has me connected to their young people.”

Over the weekend, comments Carter made at the 2014 NFC rookie symposium gained traction after former San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland referred to Carter’s advice in an story.

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“If y’all got a crew, you got to have a fall guy in the crew,” Carter said. 

“You all are not going to all do the right stuff,” Carter continued. “So I got to teach you all how to get around all this stuff too. If you're going to have a crew, one of those fools got to know he's going to jail. We'll get him out.”

The NFL posted a video of Carter’s speech on its website, which was removed after the Hall of Famer began receiving criticism for his remarks. 

Carter apologized in a pair of tweets posted Sunday night and the NFL and ESPN released statements saying they did not agree with the sentiment.