Ex-receiver Plaxico Burress finally explains how he shot himself in the leg at a club

After Aqib Talib shot himself in the leg back in June, the first reaction from most people on the internet was to compare the Broncos cornerback to Plaxico Burress. 

The comparison made sense. After all, if there's anyone out there who could possibly understand what Talib was going through, it was Burress, who shot himself in the leg at a New York nightclub back in 2008.  

Although Burress doesn't talk about the incident too often, he did take some time recently to explain exactly what happened on the night he shot himself. 

In a piece written for The Player's Tribune, Burress went into detail about what happened on Nov. 28, 2008:

My friends and I stood at the bar for like five minutes, and the place was packed wall to wall. The security guy suggested we go upstairs, where we could get a table and chill and it wouldn't be so crazy. So we did, and he led the way.

The stairway was narrow and dark and everything was black. I had a drink in my left hand and I was walking right behind the security guard. The music was loud and I could feel the bass thumping the stairs under my feet. But I could barely see and I guess I missed a step and my foot slipped. My gun came unhooked from my belt and went sliding down my right pant leg. My instant reaction was to catch it before it hit the floor, and I reached down with my right hand to grab it. And I guess my finger hit right on the trigger, because it went off.

The music was so loud that nobody actually heard the gun discharge, but I knew that it had because I saw the flash of fire through my jeans.

The crazy thing about what happened to Burress is that he didn't even know he had shot himself. According to Burress, his first reaction was to look around the club to make sure had hadn't accidentally shot someone else. Even after surveying the club, Burress still didn't know he had shot himself. 

The former wide receiver says that he didn't even realize he had been shot until he saw that his pants were wet with a substance that turned out to be blood. 

The situation ended up turning into a nightmare for Burress, but not because he shot himself. The situation got ugly for Burress because he didn't have a license to be carrying a gun in New York, and carrying an unlicensed firearm in the state called for mandatory jail time. 

It was also an issue because Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York City at the time, wanted to make sure the city court threw the book at Burress. 

In the end, Burress ended up pleading guilty to a weapons charge and was sentenced to two years in prison. The receiver, who caught the game-winning touchdown pass for the Giants in their 17-14 win over the Patriots in Super Bowl XLII, ended up spending a total of 20 months in jail. 

After his jail stint, Burress played two more seasons int he NFL, although he was only effective for one of them. The former first-round pick, who was taken eighth overall by the Steelers in the 2000 NFL Draft, ended his career in Pittsburgh following the 2012 season. 

Burress shared his gunshot story as a reminder to every player in the 2017 NFL Draft class that they're "not as special" as they think they are. To read the entire letter, be sure to check it out on the Player's Tribune

CBS Sports Writer

John Breech has been at CBS Sports since July 2011 and currently spends most of his time writing about the NFL. He's believed to be one of only three people in the world who thinks that Andy Dalton will... Full Bio

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