ESPN’s Chris Mortensen seems to believe Peyton Manning.
Mortensen spoke with Manning over the weekend shortly after an Al Jazeera documentary surfaced linking the Denver Broncos quarterback to HGH. Manning, like he did Sunday during an exclusive interview with ESPN’s Lisa Salters, denied ever taking the banned substance.
Mortensen also spoke with Charlie Sly, the pharmacist who mentioned Manning to undercover reporter Liam Collins in the documentary. Sly recanted his story about Manning, telling Mortensen he tried to “pull one over” on Collins to see if he had any idea what he was talking about.
So, what does Mortensen make of the whole situation?
The NFL insider appeared on ESPN’s “Mike and Mike” on Monday, at which point he expressed confidence in Manning and skepticism in both Sly and Collins.
“I believe that (Sly) made up the story,” Mortensen said. “First of all, he didn’t say that Peyton Manning used HGH. He does not sound credible based off the recordings that he gave to Liam Collins. He does not sound credible. Liam Collins’ background does not sound credible.
“It was important to get everybody on the record. It’s no secret that when I did some reporting on Tom Brady and the deflated footballs (in Deflategate) that we used sources, and those things can come back and bite you. It’s important that everybody be on the record on this. And when you listen to everybody’s on-the-record story, the person who sounds credible to me is Peyton Manning.
“And oh, by the way, even in Tom Brady’s case, I never identified Tom Brady as being somebody who deflated footballs.”
Maybe you couldn’t care less about Mortensen’s opinion on the matter, especially since he’s developed a rapport with Manning over the years, leading some to believe he’s biased. He’s been keeping tabs on this developing controversy, though, and many New England Patriots fans won’t forget his inaccurate report about the number of deflated footballs the team was discovered to have used in the 2014 AFC Championship Game against the Indianapolis Colts.
A double standard? You be the judge.
Thumbnail photo via Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports Images
Thumbnail photo via Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning
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