Colts owner Jim Irsay details near-death experience, opening up about past addictions

Indianapolis Colts team owner Jim Irsay recently sat down with Andrea Kremer for an episode of HBO’s “Real Sports” and detailed his journey with addiction.
Cleveland Browns v Indianapolis Colts
Cleveland Browns v Indianapolis Colts / Justin Casterline/GettyImages

Nowadays, Indianapolis Colts team owner is often seen handing out money, dancing in the locker room after wins, or advocating for changes to be made to better the NFL. However, the eclectic rockstar owner, who is now the epitome of a good-vibes guy, has a dark past that the public is well aware of. Throughout his life as a public figure, Irsay has battled with various addictions in front of the world.

Irsay has never hid from this past, opening up about his previous struggles on different occasions, and also using his journey to help others. Recently, the Colts owner sat down with award-winning journalist Andrea Kremer on an episode of HBO’s “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.” During the in-depth interview, Jim Irsay talked about the highs and lows of his life, including a situation where he nearly died.

After Irsay admitted to going to rehab “at least 15 times,” Kremer asked him if he actually ever overdosed. Irsay quickly responded, “Oh yeah,” before detailing the incident that almost claimed his life. He explain that he tried detoxing himself by mixing different drugs that he didn’t know much about. Irsay said this led to him slurring his words, then code blue, he stopped breathing.

He was eventually revived, which led to a doctor letting Irsay know that he was one lucky man.

Jim Irsay lucky to be alive after challenges with addiction

Kremer told the IndyStar that this interview was essentially 12 years in the making, admitting she has been asking the Colts for an interview of this nature for that long. However, Kremer was never told no, just that it wasn’t the right time. Now, Irsay feels that it is the right time and that’s clear by his candidness and willingness to discuss any topic.

According to the IndyStar, who received a screener for the episode that airs on HBO on Tuesday night at 10 pm ET and streams on MAX, Irsay spoke about his former girlfriend who died from an accidental overdose in a house he owned, being arrested in 2014, and his own personal struggles, but also some of his joys like music, collecting, and family.

It has been clear in recent years that Jim Irsay isn’t afraid to speak his mind or his truth, and he further proves that in this interview. Despite all that he’s been through in life, Irsay let Kremer know that he’s still standing and that the train will keep rolling.