Josh Luchs, who worked as an agent from about 1990-2007, wrote a 6,500-word story describing his life in the NFL. Beginning when he was a ball boy for the Raiders in the late '80s and ending when he was suspended in 2007 for failure to pay his agency, Luchs details several interactions with players that are eye-opening to say the least.
One such story comes from November 2005, when Luchs said he flew to Ohio State to speak with wide receiver Santonio Holmes. Luchs admits to paying college players throughout the '90s, but he said he had stopped in the 2000s, so he had no interest in paying Holmes in hopes of securing him as a client.
"We met [Holmes] outside the football building," Luchs wrote, "and he said, 'Listen, I want to save you the time. We don't need to meet. I've been taking money from [an agent] the last couple years, and he's been taking care of my family too.'"
Holmes, MVP of Super Bowl XLIII, has had his fair share of trouble over the years, including separate arrests for domestic assault, disorderly conduct and marijuana possession, and he just returned from a four-game suspension on Monday night. The suspension was for violating the league's substance-abuse policy, and Holmes was sued this year for allegedly throwing a glass at a woman in a nightclub.
Holmes denied the SI story through a spokesman, but Steve Feldman, who was with Luchs on the trip, confirmed to SI that Holmes said he was receiving payments from an agent.
Additionally, the following players named in the story admitted to SI that they received money or other benefits from agents: Carl Greenwood, Othello Henderson, Matt Soenksen, Chris Alexander, Bruce Walker, Jonathan Ogden and Singor Mobley.
Luchs also described in detail his relationship with former No. 2 overall pick Ryan Leaf, to whom the agent said he gave $300 to $700 monthly payments in 1997 and '97.
Players weren't the only ones accused of participating in some shady activity, as Luchs said that ESPN analyst Mel Kiper Jr. would participate in prearranged phone calls with agent Gary Wichard in front of top prospects. Kiper denied the claim that the calls were prearranged.
"People should know how the agent business really works, how widespread the inducements to players are and how players have their hands out," Luchs wrote. "It isn't just the big, bad agents making them take money."