Photo Courtesy Boston.com
On my way into my apartment this morning I noticed some remnants of someone’s party in the middle of the walkway. It was thick, spread out a good distance, and the color one would expect for such an occasion. The individual responsible for this mess no doubt had the same startling realization I did after last night’s game and this was the product of it. Now that there are no more excuses, no more glitches, no more flaws to the Colts game, they will steamroll the NFL from here until who knows when.
I realized this after seeing the look in Peyton’s eyes last night, when he finally realized his fullest potential. He didn’t have that exhausted “finally” look on his face. It was a look like he’d already been there, and this was just one more day on the calendar. Seeing that, I instantly succumbed to fear. That’s the look legends have. Larry Bird had the look. Tom Brady, Joe Montana had the look. That look on their face, not giving way to instant gratification, but rather savoring the moment only to know in the back of their mind there’s more to be had. And if that realization doesn’t scare anyone in the NFL who isn’t a Colts fan, you’re really not seeing the big picture.
As Patriots fans, we’re all aware of the shortcomings the Colts have had throughout the last five years. They’ve always been a pretty good team, but just couldn’t pull it together when it mattered. Peyton has been in the NFL for nine years and every year that question, “can he win the big game?” loomed over his head like a black cloud. Don’t kid yourself, that question was booming in his head before the Patriots game. After beating the Pats, he probably gained some confidence back, but he certainly has it now after last night’s victory. I concede the Bears just aren’t that good, especially with Rex Grossman, but fact is bad QB’s can win the Super Bowl and Peyton made sure that didn’t happen last night.
What stuck out to me, which is the cause for my major concerns is the Colts’ ability to come back in games. After that return and Manning interception, I figured the Colts were rattled and would have a very difficult time coming back from it. But then again, I felt the same way when the Patriots were up 21-3 in the first half two weeks ago. Like they’ve done all year it seems, Manning and the Colts methodically chipped away at the Bears and found a way to come back and keep the lead. Championship teams play like that. Dynasties play like that.
And forget all the talk about Tony Dungy. I was one of those who said he’s overrated, and I believe he still is. But his best quality is his ability to learn from past mistakes. How many times did we see the Colts blunder over the years and make poor decision after poor decision? I didn’t see any of that last night. Notice Devin Hester didn’t get any kickoffs after the first one? It’s an obvious call to most of us, but believe me, it’s not as obvious to the coaches. Remember the Pats Packers Super Bowl? Yeah, exactly. Now that he’s over those mistakes, I don’t see Tony Dungy being the hindrance he used to be. Not anymore, after last night.
For those of you who aren’t Patriots fans have grown tired of the success the Patriots have had. But last night gave birth to something far worse than the saturation you got from New England. Off the field, we’ll succumb to even more Colts/Manning frenzy, more commercials, more Tony Dungy, etc. On the field, we witnessed a complete team play like champions, like a Dynasty. This was the start of something awful for football fans. Unless you’re a Colts guy, you’re gonna hate the league over the next few years. And the sad part of it is there’s only one team capable of beating the Colts, and unless they retool and come back with a vengeance next year, the Patriots will be pushed away by the next dynasty of this new century.
Among other things, I have started to wonder about which team got the better RB in the draft this year: Pats or Colts? I’ll talk about that later this week. We’re also going to start making some changes to the site and other things like that. We’re now officially in the offseason, so it’s time to house clean. I promise, you will like what you see. Stay tuned.