We will always remember Walter Payton as one of the greatest players in NFL history. We will always remember his impact off the field just as much, if not more, than on the field. Heck, the NFL even went as far as to name their Man of the Year award after the man they call Sweetness.
In the great city of Chicago, Sweetness’ legacy is only rivaled by His Airness and Da Coach. But neither of those men were loved or endeared as Walter, and rightfully so.
Now, 12 years after his passing away by the hands of the very rare PSC (Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis) disease, a former senior writer at Sports Illustrated wants to tell the untold story of Payton. The story of Payton’s demons and private, deepest thoughts. No coincidence that the book is out for sale now, a month before the anniversary of Payton’s death. There’s also no coincidence that an article about the book is plastered across the SI.com homepage and at the bottom of the article is a link to buy the book.
Nothing like making money on a dead man’s private life.
The author explains that he wrote the book because he wanted to write about, "someone decent; someone caring". Yet goes on to say, "Classy guy, perfect in all areas, the ultimate role model, great running back and the ultimate prankster. And while that is, in many ways, sort of true, it's also a cheap, easy and unfair portrait."
We all have our faults, we all have our skeletons. The only biography that depicts its subject in a good light is the Bible, and who knows, that could be an autobiography.
Yes, Walter Payton was much more (good or bad) than just a Chicago Bear. However, writing a book to bring a good man down 12 years after his passing is just in poor taste.