When the celebration ensued at a bowling alley in Deltona, Fla. Leigh Steinberg couldn't hold back the tears. He was genuinely excited and proud to be part of the moment of his client, quarterback Paxton Lynch.
The Broncos essentially made him their future signal caller by trading up to pick him at No. 26. Steinberg's eyes welled because he was among Lynch's family and friends on that special day.
"It all explodes," Steinberg described the scene. "The ecstatic joy and excitement is a rush. For me it had been eight years since I had a first-round pick. It's been awhile to have that type of player on draft night. It was just pure joy. People were knocking each other over. And, then Denver. Are you kidding me? I would've paid Denver for them to take him. I've had enough quarterbacks that I got that went to horrible teams."
Steinberg was answering questions during a special event at Balboa Bay Club. That's where Westcoast Sports Associates, a youth athletics charity organization based in Los Angeles, had its first event in Orange County, and they made Steinberg the featured speaker.
Michael Gottlieb, a member of the WSA board of directors, said Steinberg was the perfect person for their first event in Orange County.
Steinberg is well-versed in charitable acts.
Paul Bartelt, also affiliated with WSA, sat with Steinberg during a Q&A. Bartelt fired off Steinberg's accomplishments before firing off questions.
Steinberg has led efforts to raise $750 million in charities worldwide, Bartelt said.
Also, when it came to football, there was a time Steinberg represented half of the starting quarterbacks on an NFL weekend. Steinberg has also had 61 first rounders, 50 Pro Bowl players and eight Hall of Famers.
Steinberg was excited to be a part of a charity like WSA that is, "dedicated to giving economically disadvantaged children in Southern California the opportunity to participate in organized sports."
Gottlieb is among a handful of WSA members who live in Orange County and they want to help young athletes near where they live. Gottlieb was a founding board member for WSA 21 years ago.
Former pro and USC quarterback Paul McDonald, whose sons Mike and Andrew played at Newport Harbor High, was also instrumental in the early stages of WSA and remains affiliated.
"It hasn't lost its luster," Gottlieb said of WSA. "It's still a lot of fun. There is no greater joy than to see kids playing sports who wouldn't be able to if it weren't for us."