Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning is "sickened" and "disgusted" by the recent claims that he and other athletes used performance-enhancing drugs banned by the NFL, he said Sunday on ESPN.
In a sit-down interview with Lisa Salter, Manning rebuked the allegations made by a pharmacist in an Al Jazeera documentary, "The Dark Side: Secrets of the Sports Dopers," which aired earlier that day. The Huffington Post first reported on the documentary Saturday.
"It’s completely fabricated, complete trash, garbage," Manning said of allegations that human growth hormone was mailed to his home. In the documentary, Charlie Sly claims that a clinic helping Manning recover from a neck injury in 2011 mailed HGH and other drugs to Manning's wife, Ashley, so that the quarterback’s name wouldn't be attached to them.
"It makes me sick it brings Ashley into it -- her medical history, her medical privacy being violated," he said. "That makes me sick."
But Manning did not specifically address allegations against his wife, instead distancing himself from her medical treatments.
"Any medical treatments that my wife received, that’s her business. That has nothing to do with me. Nothing that's been sent to her or [that] my wife has used have I ever taken. Absolutely not. I have my treatments that I do, she may have hers and that is her business. There's no connection between the two."
"I don’t know this guy," the quarterback told Salter. "I never heard of this guy up until this report. Never met this guy. Any medical treatments my wife received, that’s her business."
Manning repeated that he has "absolutely not" ever used HGH or any performance-enhancing drugs and that he never worked with Sly, whom Al Jazeera identified as a former employee of the clinic Manning attended.
Sly, who made the comments to an athlete who was secretly recording him, has since recanted the claims, telling ESPN that he "made up" the HGH use.
"When I was there, I had never seen the Mannings ever," Sly said. "They were not even living there at that time ... Someone who worked there said they had been there before. That was the extent of any knowledge I had. I feel badly. I never saw any files. This is just amazing that it reached this point."
Manning said he's upset that the allegations are still gaining traction despite Sly's admission.
"He admits he’s making it up," Manning said, "yet it still becomes a story."
The Indianapolis Colts, the team Manning was on while undergoing treatment at the clinic, also slammed the report as "utterly ridiculous."
This article has been updated with a statement from the Colts.
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