Ryan Leaf gets 10 years' probation

Former NFL quarterback Ryan Leaf was expected to avoid prison time as part of a deal in which he pleaded guilty to eight felony drug charges in Texas, and today that became official, as Leaf was sentenced to 10 years of probation.

Leaf, who was joined in court by his mother, read a statement in which he acknowledged he had a drug problem.

“I convinced myself it wasn’t a big deal because these weren’t illegal drugs,” Leaf said, referring to the pain pills he pleaded guilty to illegally obtaining. “But I did have a problem. It finally hit me square in the face in West Texas; I finally had to look squarely in the mirror.”

Leaf resigned as quarterbacks coach at West Texas A&M in 2008 and later spent 42 days in rehab. He says he’s been clean for 17 months.

Leaf, who is often described as the biggest bust in draft history, spoke today about how difficult that has been for him.

“I didn’t walk away from it lightly and I think people have the wrong impression of that. It hurt me to the core that I wasn’t successful at that time,” he said. “I don’t think people understand how much it hurt for me to walk away from it.”

43 responses to “Ryan Leaf gets 10 years' probation

  1. “I didn’t walk away from it lightly and I think people have the wrong impression of that. It hurt me to the core that I wasn’t successful at that time,” he said. “I don’t think people understand how much it hurt for me to walk away from it.”
    Ahh…only when the talent and opportunity are gone do some finally realize what an opportunity they had.
    Too bad you were such an incomparable douchebag, Ryan.

  2. TOTAL B.S.!!!!!
    He should get life behind bars for robbing the Chargers with his so-called gun of a arm..
    What a joke

  3. He should have been sent to prison but the judge used his NFL experience as TIME SERVED.
    Leaf should be sent to prison regardless….waste of space

  4. I can’t image how this guy feels. . . Probably like a HUGE failure. All we ever see of him is the video clip when he snapped out on a reporter. . . He probably can’t sleep at night. . . I feel for the guy.

  5. I thought he was better than Manning, maybe he was. Maybe it was the drugs or what was between his ears.

  6. “Eight felony drug charges” Damn he should have did some kind of time, even f it was a little as 30 days!

  7. This is the same guy who coerced his injured players at WT A&M to “share” half of their legally-prescribed pain medications with him. Ryan Leaf is dog crap, pure and simple.

  8. When you look back at the first round of the BFL drafts over the last 20 years or so, you got to wonder how much fate plays into these things.
    Otherwise, how could the scouts miss it so badly.
    Put Mike Phipps in as Steelers QB instead of Terry Bradshaw, do they still win 4 Super Bowls?
    Would Archie Manning be in the HOF had he not been drafted by the Saints?
    It’s still a crapshoot.

  9. Ryan was a huge D-bag and should have gone to jail. If not for drugs, for ripping off Charger fans and the front office for that signing bonus worth nothing. What a Jack Arse!

  10. maybe someone can explain Leaf’s and half this country’s fascination with prescription pain killers. I’ve been prescribed morphine, daladed (spelling error), oxy, and the rest and I can’t understand why anyone would want to take these things once the pain is gone.

  11. I suppose if he had been an active NFL quarterback, he wouldn’t have had to go to trial in the first place. First, no indictment, then, a visit with the commish, the vague threat of a team suspension, a mullet haircut, and, he’s good. Wonder what happened to all his dough? He should have been set for life with the money he stole as a player.

  12. DHSF, I don’t think ANYONE that visits/comments on PFT.com Nation thinks anything other than Peyton was the right pick. We’re an educated lot. Even though sometimes(ok, most of the time) we dont act like it.
    Tomdabomb, you seen TB’s numbers while he was qb during that stretch ? Florio coulda QB’ed The Steelers. And I like TB.

  13. Maybe it isn’t about talent, maybe it all comes down to Character! Character first, talent second!

  14. Hey, at least he didn’t buy an underage girl drinks all night until she was liquored up then sexually assault her.

  15. “once the pain is gone”
    That’s the phrase that pays, mr_snrub. Somebody with chronic or long-lasting pain (like say a football player who has taken a physical pounding over a number of years) never really gets to the point where “the pain is gone”. Painkillers really don’t cure pain, they just mask it for a while. So some like Ryan Leaf or Corey Haim just keep gobbling down pain pills because they seem to feel that the downsides of addiction (risk of arrest and jail, doctor shopping for a living, theft, DEATH, physical effects such as being strung out all the time) are still better than suffering the pain itself. And further, some people just have “addictive personalities” – they just feel better under the influence of some drug or other.
    I have rheumatoid arthritis and an artificial knee, and my orthopedist yells at me on a regular basis because I won’t take pain meds (unless they come disguised as the occasional shot of 20 year old Scotch). I’m just not prepared to risk becoming dependent on pills.

  16. Hey Leaf is Florio’s boy!! He loves jackass, mean-spirited, QBs and he hates loving and caring ones.

  17. People going through what he has gone/going through have to hit “rock bottom” before they can begin to rebuild.
    He’s a bad day away from REALLY bad day/ REST OF HIS LIFE.
    I wish him all the best and will not pile on.
    He could go on to great things.
    I Loved the music of Alice Cooper who was/is an alcoholic.
    He said “the only way you will quit anything is if you finally decide YOU WANT TO”.
    No truer words have been spoken.
    He’s not a joke, he’s a COULD be again.
    I’m not giving up on him.

  18. I laugh at how many want to change history and act like Peyton was the obvious choice
    At the time, Leaf was supposed to be better by MANY MANY people

  19. Being a Buckeye, this reminds me of another collosal downfall. Though not on as big a stage, it was vastly more rediculous.
    I give the downward spiral of true-freshman, National Championship MVP (? I think), Maurice Clarrett.
    Sometimes talent isn’t everything I guess.
    If you don’t remember his story, I suggest you look it up. It’ll prove to be very entertaining.

  20. This makes me wonder if something is wrong with me… I laughed at him for years, and just now all of a sudden feel horribly sorry for the guy.
    I wish him the best of luck in life

  21. Seems like a bit much for what he did, 10 years of probation is no walk away. Putting him in jail would just waist more taxes and rehab is what he really needs. If he goes to jail, then he gets more drugs then he could on the outside. Hope he get’s better. To all the perfect people here, I’d love to dig in your closet. It’s easy to be perfect behind the curtain, right?

  22. biggest bust in nfl history.
    if he would of came out in 1999 cleveland would of took him for sure.

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