Chris Graythen/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Former LSU defensive back Tyrann Mathieu was selected by the Arizona Cardinals with the 69th pick of the NFL Draft Friday night.
“I mean seven months ago I didn’t think I would be in this situation,” Mathieu said when he was asked by ESPN why he seemed so emotional. “I had everything taken away from me. I believed in God I had faith and I kept pushing and kept fighting. I’m just so happy that somebody had faith in me.”
Mathieu, a Heisman Trophy finalist in 2011, was kicked off the LSU team last season for failing multiple drug tests.
Mathieu was then arrested in October with three former teammates when police found 10 bags of Marijuana and drug paraphernalia in his Baton Rouge apartment.
Since then, he entered a drug treatment program and is being mentored by his former LSU and new Cardinals teammate Patrick Peterson. Peterson vouched for Mathieu to the Cardinals organization.
“I’m proud to be a member of the Arizona Cardinals,” a choked up Mathieu tolld ESPN. “I’ve spent a couple months in Arizona around their facility. Finally to be a part of their family and to be able to do it with Patrick and Larry Fitzgerald- people who can show me how to be a true professional- that’s what I’m looking forward to the most.”
Mathieu won the Bednarik award as defensive player of the year in 2011. He holds the LSU record for most forced fumbles with 11.