(Many NFL players join the league, retire, and live happily ever after. Many more join the league, retire, and then slowly slide into depression, divorce, and debt. But some guys join the league, retire, and then apparently have a blood debt to pay in exchange for their career. And when Satan comes to collect for services rendered, he is a jerk. This is the first in an ongoing series of Epic NFL Players Who Did Not So Much Do With The Riding Into The Sunset. Because sometimes, you need to feel better about your life as a toilet salesman.)
The weird thing about this one is that Walter Payton had the scariest, gassiest, mustache-iest bodyguards ever: the City of Chicago. Seriously, if you’re in Chicago, and find yourself in a situation where you have to choose between insulting Walter Payton, and robbing a bank, we hope for your sake that you’re this guy:
Because then at least you could do the bank thing.
In addition to being vouched for by the room-clearing sausage fart capital of the world, Walter Payton is universally regarded as one of the greatest running backs of all time. He went to the Pro-Bowl nine times, which is only one time less then the number of times Eli Manning goes to the pro-bowl in that dream he has where Archie Manning finally loves him.
And then he got Primary Schlerosing Cholangitis.
No, not Eli. Walter.
This is an illness so complicated to pronounce, we would probably have to point to it on the menu when the waiter asked for our order.
Primary sclerosing cholangitis is French for “Your liver has submitted its resignation, and Lifetime’s movie people would like to do lunch.”
Payton spent his last 10 months recording public service ads for organ donation, complete with the tasty irony of having recorded the first one after his disease was too advanced for a transplant to make any difference. Which would be the tasty irony on special at Walter Payton’s Roundhouse, were it not already this:
Yeah, he's awesome.