Peyton Manning addressed the allegations against him in an upcoming Al Jazeera report on ESPN on Sunday morning. It is reportedly stated that Manning used human growth hormone as he tried to recover from neck surgery in 2011 as a member of the Indianapolis Colts.
During his appearance on the Worldwide Leader, Manning unsurprisingly denied ever using any performance enhancing drugs. This is consistent with a statement that he released on Saturday night, when he said that the allegations were “complete garbage” and that he “can’t believe somebody would put something like this on the air.” It is also in-line with a statement that was released by his recently-hired spokesperson Ari Fleischer, who also said that Manning never used HGH or failed a drug test.
“For the record, I have never used HGH,” Manning told ESPN’s Chris Mortensen. “It absolutely never happened.”
Manning also gave an exclusive interview to ESPN’s Lisa Salters, saying that he was “disgusted” and “sickened” over the report. He was adamant that the allegations are “garbage,” saying multiple times that they were “completely fabricated.”
“Absolutely not,” Manning said when he was asked if he ever used human growth hormone. He also said that the thing that bothers him the most is that some “slapstick” alleged that he used drugs in an attempt to recover from his neck issues in 2011.
“It stings me, whoever this guy is, insinuating that I cut corners, I broke NFL rules, in order to get healthy,” Manning said. “It’s a joke. It’s a freaking joke.”
The NFL’s all-time leader in touchdown passes said that everything that he used to recover from neck surgery was done with the blessing of the Colts, and that he spent a lot of time in hyperbaric chambers at the Guyer Institute, the place that allegedly sent HGH to Manning’s house under his wife’s name.
The full Al Jazeera report is expected to come out sometime Sunday.