Five things from Manning vs. Al Jazeera

DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 28:  Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos looks on during player warm ups before a game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 28, 2015 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

Would this face lie? Payton Manning is well-armed to win the image battle. (Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

Five take-aways from watching the Al Jazeera report on the oft-injected underbelly of sports (OK, I may have breezed through some of the parts that didn’t involve Payton Manning ):

  1. Manning doesn’t need to sue over this. There is enough reasonable doubt contained within the report that the Denver quarterback can continue to wage an effective campaign in the court of public opinion. At least until something more concrete comes along. The fact that his first act was to hire a top-shelf PR guy, Ari Fleischer, rather than a lawyer would seem to tip off that game plan.
  2. It has been shown that the sports doping class is putting itself at long-term physical risk. What this report further underscores is the terrible damage it does to its collective soul by just associating with the PED suppliers. In the report we are introduced to an assortment of obvious weasels. I wouldn’t take a vitamin from any those sketchy characters, let alone something that can rearrange your hormones.
  3. Just a suggestion: If you are a multi-millionaire sports and marketing icon, don’t seek any kind of treatment at an “anti-aging clinic.” Aren’t there plenty of “hospitals” or “doctors’ offices” where Manning and his wife could get what was required. Manning admits that he and his wife were customers of one such Indianapolis clinic. So, what, was Ashley Manning prepping for a fight with Ronda Rousey?
  4. An assortment of other names were dropped in the Al Jazeera report, from the realms of baseball and football. They’ve all issued the requisite denials, but are all quietly grateful that Manning’s name is providing them such an awful lot of shade.
  5. We’re fooling ourselves if we think there can be any kind of clear-cut victory claimed in the war against PEDs. One look at the candy store of steroids and hormones that these characters had in their fridge will confirm that. There always is going to be a market for their wares. Where ego meets greed, the incentive is overpowering. Was Manning among the users of HGH in the wake of his multiple neck surgeries? I want to say, “No that’s absurd, no way, ridiculous.” I want to say, “That report has more holes in it than a U.S. border fence.” But the sad fact is that in this world, such blanket defenses aren’t wise.

Reader Comments 0


There are many such "Anti-aging" clinics across the US.  They are staffed by doctors just like any other practice.  Some of them supply their own compounded (custom made) drugs/hormones but often a compounding pharmacy supplies the prescribed substances.  Many of them are very highly regarded. 

The traditional world of medicine is far behind the times in recognizing and assessing deficient and optimal levels of hormones and other substances in the body.  Traditional doctors are apt, for convenience's sake, to rely on that readout from the lab that says "normal" or "high" or "low" without considering the individual patient's symptoms and needs.  Example: One can have an auto-immune condition affecting hormone levels and show "normal" hormone levels as defined by the lab.  Guess how I know!

Women often go to anti-aging clinics out of frustration because they have been told, sometimes more than once, that "oh, that's what happens when you hit forty" (or whatever age you are) and that "there is no such thing as brain fog, there's nothing wrong with you."  Or they go proactively to avoid the decline in energy and mental function that our changing bodies are subject to in middle age.

I imagine that men have similar concerns, particularly professional athletes.  Professional sports are the domain of the young and, eventually, everyone ages out.

I have always enjoyed Peyton Manning's professionalism.  He seems to be an upright and honest man.  I tend to believe him and not some two-bit hack from an Arabic newsmonger. 


 HGH is as much a PED as Advil and Tylenol.  I take three Advil every Saturday before teeing it up for a round.  Am I taking a PED?  You bet I am.  I also where that a performance enhancer when I play tennis?  How about a knee brace?

All are performance enhancements....the sports industry is just selective in what it calls a "PED".  


Who cares?


Would we take the same article serious from a super market tabloid? Maybe that will be the next article we are exposed to. PEYTON MANNING'S NECK WAS INJURED BY THE CRASH OF HIS ALIEN SPACE SHIP. Give me a break Steve.