Posts Tagged ‘Peyton Manning’

Will Sunday be Peyton Manning’s last game?

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Probably the most intriguing and perhaps biggest regular season football game in Indianapolis Colts history will take place Sunday night when the Colts take on the Denver Broncos, or more accurately, when the Colts take on Peyton Manning.

Its an obvious observation to say that Peyton Manning is an Indianapolis icon, and easily the biggest sports star to ever play in Indiana’s capital city. But a year and a half ago, with his health and career in question, he emotionally announced he was leaving the Colts, and as a result he left a city divided and many of his fans in mourning.

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I’m in the camp that says the MVP award has already been locked up by the Vikings all-world running back, Adrian Peterson, who after a devastating knee injury a year ago is by any measure having one of the most astounding seasons in the history of the NFL and is the only real offensive threat the Vikings have.

But in an age when passing dominates the offensive game plan and running backs are seen as an interchangeable dime a dozen, Adrian Peterson is the decided underdog in the MVP race. While I understand that this is the way things are these days, it doesn’t mean I have to like it or accept it.

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When cancer-stricken head coach Chuck Pagano, breathlessly congratulated his team Sunday afternoon, as he visited the locker room, it started to look like the NFL’s best unfolding story is the heartwarming turnaround of the Indianapolis Colts.

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The AFC Championship will pit the Steelers against New England with the Pittsburgh Steelers going to the Super Bowl.

In the end I pick the Steelers to defeat the 49ers to win a record seventh Super Bowl title.

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Peyton Manning is a Bronco. Bounty hunting is severely punished. And Tim Tebow takes Tebow-mania to the Big Apple. Just like that, in the span of only a few days, the very predictable NFL world has been turned inside-out.

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This has easily been the biggest sports decision ever made in Indiana’s capital city. But deciding to release Manning, who has had at least four “procedures” or surgeries on his neck in two years, has ramifications that loom far beyond the stately, retractable roof, downtown football stadium that Manning’s greatness helped build.

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This also isn’t about the money. Not really. Yes, there are 28 million reasons why the Indianapolis Colts need to think long and hard about whether to pay Manning the bonus he is due the first week of March. The clock is ticking on that. This is really more about honor and doing the right thing.
This is why in the end, it should come down to Peyton Manning truly understanding what the right thing to do is.

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I thought hard about one of sports most meaningful quotes as I watched the Indianapolis Colts improbable last second victory Thursday night over the Houston Texans. Stuck in my head was former New York Jets coach Herman Edwards’ unforgettable mantra: “you play to win the game.” Playing to win is the very essence of sports.

Two years ago, the Colts were on the verge of an undefeated regular season. But coaches and management opted to rest certain players so they would be healthy for the playoff run. As a result the Colts lost the last two games to finish the regular season 14 – 2. Indianapolis fans have never forgiven Colts’ management for not trying to win every game in 2009.

The Colts did win two playoff games and went to the Super Bowl, but they would lose a close hard fought game to the New Orleans Saints.

Many have come to believe that the Colts are still suffering from the karmic consequences of a season spoiling decision.

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It has been a charmed decade for the Indianapolis Colts, the NFL’s winningest team during that streatch, but fortunes can change in an instant. This is one of those times. The team that just a few short years ago won a Super Bowl and narrowly missed winning another, is now the worst team in the league. These days the Colts appear inept and literally defenseless.

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The Indianapolis Colts never had a chance. The Who Dat Nation and the New Orleans Saints were not to be denied on Super Bowl Sunday. Call it fate, destiny or whatever, but something intervened. This was the Saints’ Super Bowl. The Saints reaped the benefits of every break, hit a bit harder and seemed to […]

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I was reminded this morning that this is the 25th anniversary of my becoming a Colts fan.  On this day two and a half decades ago the Colts left Baltimore under the cover of darkness and moved to my hometown,  Indianapolis.  The move enhanced the transformation of one city and devastated another.  All these years later, […]

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