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Ex-Eagles WR Freddie Mitchell sentenced to 37 months in prison

By John Breech | CBSSports.com

(Freddie Mitchell in 2009)

Former Eagles wide receiver Freddie Mitchell played for four years in the NFL, now he's going to spend almost that much time in prison. Mitchell was sentenced to 37 months in a federal prison on Tuesday in Orlando after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to file a false tax claim in March, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Mitchell was facing a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, but his lawyers requested a shorter sentence because of brain injuries they claimed Mitchell suffered while playing in the NFL, according to Philly.com.

The former Eagle and his co-defendants were nailed when they tried to file a false tax return in the name of NBA player Drew Gooden. Mitchell convinced Gooden to let the co-defendants prepare Gooden's taxes because they had previously gotten Mitchell a refund of $1 million. The co-defendants eventually filed a false $2 million refund in Gooden's name.

Gooden later tried to file a real tax return, but the IRS had already mailed a $2 million return to Mitchell and his co-defendants.

Mitchell's final season in the NFL came in 2004 and his final game came in the Eagles Super Bowl XXXIX loss to the Patriots. The former first-round pick is probably best known for being on the receiving end of Donovan McNabb's fourth-and-26 pass against the Packers in the Divisional playoffs following the 2003 season.

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