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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.”

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43 Responses to “Ryan Leaf gets 10 years' probation”
  1. DieHardSkinsFan21 says: Apr 14, 2010 5:00 PM

    Anyone out there still think that Peyton wasn’t the right pick?

  2. Big_McLargeHuge says: Apr 14, 2010 5:00 PM

    Hopefully this asshat will turn over a new leaf

  3. Slow Joe says: Apr 14, 2010 5:00 PM

    “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.

  4. karmathaitch says: Apr 14, 2010 5:01 PM

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

  5. nfcbeast says: Apr 14, 2010 5:02 PM

    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

  6. Bearfan54 says: Apr 14, 2010 5:03 PM

    In other words he will be going to the pen in the next ten years.

  7. myspaceyourface says: Apr 14, 2010 5:03 PM

    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.

  8. jibfest says: Apr 14, 2010 5:06 PM

    Man, if coach would put him in now they would definately win the SuperBowl.

  9. Pack_Attack says: Apr 14, 2010 5:06 PM

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

  10. rcunningham says: Apr 14, 2010 5:07 PM

    LOL Chargers

  11. Philly Cheese says: Apr 14, 2010 5:08 PM

    Not everyone can handle the pressure and trappings of fame. Sad story.

  12. D.R.Universal says: Apr 14, 2010 5:10 PM

    the double standard DOES exist! ha

  13. WarrenMoonGOAT says: Apr 14, 2010 5:13 PM

    10 years probation?
    who was his lawyer…Florio?

  14. irishgary says: Apr 14, 2010 5:17 PM

    He’ll never make the ten without screwing up…….Total Moron

  15. tx_tuff says: Apr 14, 2010 5:18 PM

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

  16. God's Own Silver and Blue says: Apr 14, 2010 5:23 PM

    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.

  17. Free_Ryan_Leaf says: Apr 14, 2010 5:25 PM

    Whew…that was close.

  18. Tomthebombtracy says: Apr 14, 2010 5:26 PM

    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.

  19. sed777 says: Apr 14, 2010 5:27 PM

    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!

  20. se18a29 says: Apr 14, 2010 5:29 PM

    He’s a victim of being a horsecrap QB… lol

  21. Big Daddy_71 says: Apr 14, 2010 5:43 PM

    Biggest D-bag ever!

  22. Cincinnasty says: Apr 14, 2010 5:56 PM

    Ryan Leaf…Bwhahahahaha

  23. Occam says: Apr 14, 2010 6:04 PM

    He would have gotten five, but told the judge, “Don’t talk to me. Knock it off!!!”

  24. stunzeed2 says: Apr 14, 2010 6:04 PM

    Dallas ACTUALLY had this guy behind center.
    PATHETIC move by stretch-face.

  25. mr_snrub says: Apr 14, 2010 6:07 PM

    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.

  26. tombrookshire says: Apr 14, 2010 6:12 PM

    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.

  27. BleedingSilverAndBlack says: Apr 14, 2010 6:13 PM

    The Chargers still own claim to the worst pick of all time.

  28. Hap says: Apr 14, 2010 6:24 PM

    DHSF, I don’t think ANYONE that visits/comments on 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.

  29. eagledan says: Apr 14, 2010 6:31 PM

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

  30. Chapnasty2 says: Apr 14, 2010 6:40 PM

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

  31. God's Own Silver and Blue says: Apr 14, 2010 6:43 PM

    “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.

  32. SterilizeTHenry says: Apr 14, 2010 6:48 PM

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

  33. Who is Mike Jones says: Apr 14, 2010 7:15 PM

    After the Raiders move Russell to Tackle, they can sign Leaf.

  34. mholt59 says: Apr 14, 2010 7:17 PM

    What a loser.
    signed: Todd Marinovich & Art Schlister

  35. TheToolofTools says: Apr 14, 2010 7:26 PM

    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.

  36. Bious says: Apr 14, 2010 7:38 PM

    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

  37. ☻☼CBS, FOX, ESPN, NFLN nbc says: Apr 14, 2010 7:59 PM

    What if it was Ochocinco who stole those pills?

  38. ☻☼CBS, FOX, ESPN, NFLN nbc says: Apr 14, 2010 8:00 PM

    He should get 10 years hard time for what he did to the Bolts

  39. a3gill says: Apr 14, 2010 8:10 PM

    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.

  40. soberjoe says: Apr 14, 2010 8:14 PM

    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

  41. earlcampbellrules says: Apr 14, 2010 8:25 PM

    Eventually, it all comes back around.

  42. bobhoo says: Apr 14, 2010 8:37 PM

    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?

  43. white caveman says: Apr 14, 2010 9:22 PM

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

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