Former NFL quarterback Ryan Leaf, taken one pick after Peyton Manning in the 1998 NFL Draft, was sent to Montana state prison after being kicked out of a residential drug program, reports the Great Falls Tribune (via ProFootballTalk).
Leaf was at the rehabilitation center to start a five-year prison term. He had been arrested twice in less than a week -- in March and April of last year -- for trying to steal prescription painkillers.
But officials "terminated Leaf from the treatment program and placed him in prison after he was found guilty of behavior that violated conditions of his drug treatment placement,” Dawn Handa, regional probation and parole administrator in Great Falls, said in a statement to the Great Falls Tribune. “The violations included threatening a program staff member.”
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Leaf would have been in line to serve only about 15 months of his sentence if he had successfully completed the rehab program, the paper reported.
Leaf, the strong-armed quarterback from Washington State, was selected by the San Diego Chargers with the second pick in the NFL Draft. He struggled on the field and played in only 25 career games. He has dealt with substance abuse issues in subsequent years.