Hunter S. Thompson, the author known for his drug-fueled gonzo journalism, was a football fan and a friend of Colts owner Jim Irsay. But Thompson wasn’t much of a draft scout.
It turns out that Thompson was among those who believed before the 1998 NFL draft that Ryan Leaf was the better prospect than Peyton Manning.
That comes from Leaf, who this week was given a copy of a letter Thompson sent to Irsay, urging him to draft Leaf. The note, written in Thompson’s humorous tone, was posted on Instagram by Leaf.
“Dear James,” Thompson wrote. “In response to yr. addled request for a quick $30M loan to secure the services of the Manning kid — I have to say No, at this time
“But the Leaf boy is another matter. He looks strong & Manning doesn’t — or at least not strong enough to handle that ‘Welcome to the NFL’ business for two years without a world-class offensive line.
“How are you fixed at left OT for the next few years, James? Think about it. You don’t want a china doll back there when that freak Sapp comes crashing in.
“Okay. Let me know if you need some money for Leaf. I expect to be very rich when this depp movie comes out.
“Yr. faithful consultant, HUNTER”
Fortunately for the Colts, Irsay did not listen to Thompson.