Catching Up With Ryan Leaf

What’s Ryan Leaf up to these days? He’s living with his parents and selling resort packages. “I would like to be able to walk into a room . . . introduce myself and be the person I am now and have people make their judgments from that,” Leaf says. “That’s all I can do.”

Betsey Blaney of The Associated Press had a story this week about the former Washington State quarterback. It’s worth a read:

Then he turned into one of the biggest busts in league history. He was booed and benched in San Diego, where he lost 14 of his first 18 starts. He lashed out at fans, journalists and teammates who criticized him. And in the years after he washed out of football, his life got worse – ending in a criminal conviction.

But here’s the thing: Leaf gets it that he fell short, how he disappointed, and how he rubbed people the wrong way with his arrogance. And now in the relative calm of his Montana hometown, under the eyes of his parents, he’s trying to mount a comeback at the age of 34, nine years after his last NFL pass.

It’s not about a return to football. It’s about being accepted, about a return to normalcy.

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