Aaron Hernandez has not yet been convicted of any crime, but that hasn’t stopped endorsers and other companies from cutting ties with him. The latest to scrub Hernandez from existence is video game juggernaut EA Sports.
On Monday, an EA Sports spokesperson told CBSSports.com that the former New England Patriots tight end is being removed from NCAA Football 14 and will not be featured in Madden NFL 25, the latest edition of the popular NFL video game series. The news came after the following photo began making the rounds on Twitter (via @LiterallyLowe), which shows Hernandez being unlocked as a reward in NCAA Football 14:
“We made a decision to remove Aaron Hernandez from Madden NFL 25 and NCAA Football 14,” the spokesperson said. “Because NCAA Football 14 was finalized prior to our decision, Hernandez’ image still appears in the Nike Skills Trainer. However, he is not in the game, and anyone who unlocks that particular Nike Skills Trainer reward will receive an Alex Smith Ultimate Team player item instead. The image of Hernandez will be removed via a Title Update in the near future.”
Alex Smith instead of Hernandez? Ouch. Well, I guess that wouldn’t be so bad if we’re talking college.
Hernandez being dropped from video games is just the latest example showing how his image continues to crumble. First his jerseys were removed from online Pro shops, then sponsors dropped him, then the Patriots offered a free jersey exchange, and now EA Sports. Does that mean games that still feature Hernandez have become the latest eBay collector’s item? Based on what we saw last week, that wouldn’t be a surprise.