Ex-Dallas Cowboy Josh Brent Faces Possible 20 Years in Teammate's Death

The former NFL player is on trial accused of intoxication manslaughter in friend's death.
3:00 | 01/14/14

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Transcript for Ex-Dallas Cowboy Josh Brent Faces Possible 20 Years in Teammate's Death
We begin with a former dallas cowboy player on trial for the dunk driving death of a close friend and teammate. Josh brent ising as many as 20 years in prison but the defense is denying that he was even intoxicated. Abc's gio benitez has the story for us. Reporter: They seemed inseparable, college pals who woo later play for the dallas cowboys later. One is dead and the other charged with intoxication manslaughter. Josh brent known for menacing quarterbacks could face, if convicted, 20 years in prison for the 2012 death of teammate jerry brown, brown was the passenger the night brent crashed his mercedes. 911. There's a car in the middle of the road on fire upside down. Reporter: Police dash cam video shows the overturned car still smoking. First responders are astepping to brown who later died and brent during a field sobriety test where police say he couldn't recite the alphabet and admitted he had a buzz going on. In opening arguments monday prosecutors used that video to illustrate the basis of their case, that brent's blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit, the district attorney saying "the blood does not lie." But brent's attorney told jurors that the 320-pound former lineman could safely drink more than most people, saying "josh brent is as big as a house. He was guilty of being stupid and driving too fast, but he was not drunk." Size as a defense? The doctor we spoke to says, it doesn't add up. One's impairment has absolutely nothing to do with their size and weight and height. Reporter: As for brent and brown, the two were said to be like brothers. Can't get any tighter than those two. Reporter: Even brown's mother says she has forgiven brent but prosecutors say that doesn't change the facts. They claim receipts prove brent bought several cocktails and three bottles of champagne that night. Brent has pleaded not guilty. And brent reportedly told police he shared that liquor with friends at a nightclub. Meanwhile, the police report from that night also says brent had been driving with an expired and suspended license, robin. All right, gio, thank you. We'll bring in abc chief legal affairs anchor dan abrams. Let's get right to it. The lawyer using size as a defense. It's not particularly effective. As you heard the expert someone 300 pounds just has to drink more to get to that same level as someone 150 pounds so once you get that number, that 0.18, that's already incorporated your size. Look, typically when you're in the position he's in, you want to get blood alcohol tests thrown out before the trial. You see that happen a lot. Because they say it was unreliable. There were various problem, et cetera. They didn't succeed. They're still trying to have the jury minimize that but they're in a tough spot. This is a very tough case for the defense. And the key in my view is sentencing, which is I think they know he's going to get convicted of something here. And, remember, he's not just charged with intoxication manslaughter. He's also charged with regular manslaughter. Jurors could decide we don't think, let's say for argument sake there's not enough evidence he was intoxicated but driving over 100 miles an hour could be manslaughter even if they don't think he's drunk so when you have a range of probation to 20 year, this jury, which is going to decide the sentence, very unusual. The jury is going to decide the sentence. That's right so I think what the defense is doing is playing here for the sentence. They know there's going to be a conviction or certainly suspect it. They're going to try to argue everything they can and hope to get some sympathy in particular because the victim's family members support him. His mother. His mother has forgiven brent. She has forgiven brent and would like to testify at the sentencing. Exactly right so while her testimony might not be relevant to guilt or innocence when you're talking about the dense her testimony could be very rell vaptsz and I think that's what this is about. Very interesting. Thanks, guys. To the debate taking off

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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