GREEN BAY — Even before their blowout loss in Arizona, the Packers falling 38-8 to the Cardinals, there was controversy off the field for the Green Bay Packers. An explosive new report by Al Jazeera, called “The Dark Side,” links members of the team to performance-enhancing drugs.
Packers players Clay Matthews (defensive end), Mike Neal (linebacker) and Julius Peppers (linebacker) are all named in the report.
Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning is vehemently refuting the report that was set to air on Al Jazeera Sunday night, December 27th that contends he received human growth hormone through his wife during his recovery from neck fusion surgeries in 2011 in Indianapolis. The allegations surfaced in an Al Jazeera undercover probe into doping in global sports that was shared in advance with the Huffington Post.
According to the report, Neal and Peppers are alleged to have been supplied a hormone supplement that is, according to the report, “steroidal in nature.” However, it is not an anabolic steroid.
In addition, the report claims Matthews was provided with the prescription painkiller Percocet for at least one game.
“I had Clay Matthews, who was badly injured — we sent some narcotics to kill the pain. He could barely get out of bed,” a pharmacist says in the report.
“It’s bull(expletive), to be completely honest with you. It’s 100% falsified, fabricated information. I don’t know who this guy is. I mean, I couldn’t tell you what he looks like. I’ve never talked with him. I’ve never communicated with him. So for him to bring my name up like that, which, you know, appears to be out of thin air, you know, it’s just bull(expletive), for lack of a better term. I work hard on my reputation — and that’s really all I have. For seven years I’ve worked my (expletive) off, and you know, for this guy to say those things — it just is not true. And, you know, especially for him to recant everything he’s said too — I think it really just goes to show this source as well. The truth will come out, and I’m not worried about it because I carry myself a certain way — and that’s the right way,” Matthews said.
Manning, Matthews, Neal and Peppers are denying the claims — and most Green Bay Packers fans say they’re not believing any of it.
“It’s completely fabricated. Complete trash, garbage,” Manning told ESPN on Sunday.
“You might as well just stop asking me questions. I mean, I’m sure you saw how (expletive) off Peyton Manning was about somebody coming out with false accusations, so if you want to (expletive) me off, that’s one thing, but please don’t…if you want to talk about football, let’s talk about football,” Neal said.
HGH in itself is not illegal, but is banned in many professional sports, including the NFL since 2011.
That is that same year that, according to a documentary by Al Jazeera America, Manning used the performance-enhancing drug to aid his recovery from multiple surgeries.
Manning is not alone in denying the allegation of HGH use — the doctor and even the source who made the claim to Al Jazeera called the report false.
Packers fans on Sunday were commenting on the report.
“I`m not reading much into that,” a Packers fan said.
In the documentary, a pharmacist claims he supplied athletes, including Packers players, with drugs. The pharmacist named Neal, Matthews and Peppers, and says it went further during a six-week trip to Green Bay last year.
“I set Mike`s stuff up, but then he started bringing everybody. I`m not even joking, more than half the team started to come by,” the pharmacist says in the documentary.
Some Packers fans are calling the documentary speculation — and even a distraction.
“It’s tough to say what`s true, and what`s not true,” a Packers fan said.
“I got faith in my boys. We`ve got the best quarterback in the league out there,” a Packers fan said.
Dr. Dale Guyer is the owner of the Guyer Institute — an anti-aging clinic in Indianapolis. Former Guyer Institute employee Charlie Sly now says his statements, told to an athlete working undercover for Al Jazeera were false.