Former Viking named among big-talent draft picks that never panned out

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Not every high-end draft prospect ends up being a home run. Some have even come with universal support from executives, coaches and pro scouts, only to fall flat on their face when the helmet and pads come on.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler compiled a list of 15 individuals, named by executives and scouts, that were some of the more surprising cases of players not living up to expectations over the last “15 or so years.”

Former Minnesota Vikings cornerback Chris Cook, the No. 34 overall pick of the 2010 NFL draft, was named on that list.

Cook, who was believed by many to be a first-round talent, came into the league with a lot of promise, but he was plagued by disturbing off-the-field drama and ultimately fizzled out after five seasons.

He faced serious charges after an alleged domestic violence incident with his then-girlfriend back in 2011. He was charged with one count of third-degree assault and one count of domestic assault by strangulation.

The charges ended up being dropped, and he was ultimately acquitted after being suspended and sitting out most of the season for the Vikings. However, prosecutors held firm to the belief that the alleged victim in the incident was coerced into changing her story.

But Cook was allowed to return to the team. He even became a regular starter in his last two years, but he wasn’t re-signed once his rookie deal ran out. The San Francisco 49ers signed him to a pair of one-year contracts before eventually cutting him in 2015.

“Really talented guy, speed, 6-foot-2, rangy,” An NFL coordinator said when describing Cook, according to Fowler. “I had big hopes for him. I just think he got sidetracked off the field, and it affected his career.”

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