The three Green Bay Packers mentioned in the Al Jazeera story about pro athletes who use performance-enhancing drugs — Clay Matthews, Julius Peppers and Mike Neal — have all denied any wrongdoing.
Well, mostly anyway.
Matthews and Peppers told the Journal-Sentinel they don’t even know the pharmacist who leaked the information, Charlie Sly, and denied any wrongdoing altogether.
This was Matthews’ reaction.
“I think it is bulls—,” Matthews said. “I mean to be completely honest with you it’s 100 percent falsified and fabricated information. I don’t know who this guy is. I couldn’t tell you what he looks like. I have never talked with him or communicated with him, so for him to bring my name up like that out of thin air is bulls— for a lack of a better term.”
Peppers also denied knowing Sly. He had this to say.
“I was a little bit shocked,” Peppers said. “It is not true and completely erroneous and completely irresponsible journalism in my opinion. I don’t understand how I could be linked to something like this.”
Mike Neal had a similar reaction, but didn’t go so far as to say he didn’t know Sly.
“You might as well stop asking me questions,” Neal said. “I mean, I’m sure you saw how pissed off Peyton Manning was about somebody coming out with talk like this. If you want to piss me off, that’s one thing, but please don’t … if you want to talk about football, let’s talk about football.”
Not exactly a resounding denial on Neal’s part. But you can probably see why.
Peppers’ name also came up in connection with Neal’s, but Peppers didn’t join the Packers until 2014, so that connection isn’t very strong. Sly alleges Matthews only asked for painkillers.