American Addiction Centers

Addiction Talk Episode 48: Leigh Steinberg

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Many know Leigh Steinberg as one of the most prolific sports agents, having represented more than 300 professional athletes in his 40+ year career, and as the real-life inspiration for Jerry Maguire. Steinberg’s clients include former San Francisco 49ers QB Steve Young, former Dallas Cowboys QB Troy Aikman and current QB for the Kansas City Chiefs Patrick Mahomes.

Leigh’s reputation stemming from his decades of success precedes him, but what many may not know is that he endured a public battle with addiction to alcohol. For nearly 10 years, Steinberg struggled with alcohol, which was spurred by financial issues. In 1997, Leigh was arrested for driving under the influence. Some time later, in the early 2000s, he entered into extensive litigation with former partners, which significantly affected his finances. This troubling time, during which his debt mounted, in addition to a divorce settlement exacerbated Leigh’s drinking, resulted in another DUI arrest in 2007 and an arrest for public intoxication in 2008. By 2010, with a number of lawsuits and judgments against him, Leigh says he realized that his drinking was hurting himself and others around him and decided to seek help.

Now, with more than 13 years in recovery, Steinberg is continuing his success in the sports industry. Steinberg Sports and Entertainment recently negotiated the largest deal in NFL history and will be expanding beyond its football roots; professional athletes from the MLB, NBA and BMX are all on the agency’s roster.



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