After pleading guilty to his role in a nationwide scheme to defraud the NFL’s healthcare benefit program for league veterans, former All-Pro running back Clinton Portis was sentenced to six months in prison on Thursday.
Federal prosecutors had previously recommended a high-end sentencing — between 10 and 16 months of prison time — as well as a fine for Portis’ involvement in the fraud case. That’s according to U.S. District Court filings obtained by CBS Sports.
Portis, 40, best known as a repeat Pro Bowler for the Washington Football Team from 2004-2010, wrongfully obtained nearly $100,000 as part of a crime ring that sought more than $2.8 million through false reimbursement claims. Former NFL linebacker Robert McCune allegedly orchestrated the scheme, which targeted a reimbursement account established to help retired players cover medical expenses, but Portis admitted in August that he made two separate false and fraudulent claims as part of the operation.
Portis’ counsel filed a sentencing memorandum Dec. 30 to request a sentence of “time served” in lieu of incarceration, meaning he would face zero jail time after Thursday’s sentencing. Other defendants, including fellow NFL alumni Antwan Odom, Carlos Rogers and Joe Horn, avoided incarceration despite similar conduct in the scheme, Portis’ filing states. The retired Washington star also notes that he now has multiple minor children, including infant twins born in August, who depend on him.
Portis, who previously filed for bankruptcy in 2015, has also lost most of his business opportunities since his initial indictment in December 2019, his filing argues, noting that he lost a broadcasting job with Washington Football Team — as well as future sports-betting opportunities with Fox and Bleacher Report — due to his legal situation. His filing includes nearly 60 letters from peers advocating for his character, including former…