Peyton Manning and I have a long-standing feud. It dates back to prehistoric times when the Chiefs lost to the Colts in the 2004 playoff game, when the punters kept the bench warm because neither offense could be stopped. I’m not here to rehash that game, but here’s a link to read about that unbelievable game. You’re welcome.
I’m sure we can all agree: that was a heartbreaking loss. Personally, I thought the Chiefs were headed to the Super Bowl. Instead the Chiefs were one and done AGAIN, and we Chiefs fans boxed up our gear for another offseason that came sooner than planned.
I have despised Manning since that game. I’ve reveled in his losses, and bristled when people call him the greatest quarterback ever. If you decide to argue with this in the comments, I will ignore you. (OK, OK, I do enjoy his Sony commercials. And that one time on SNL. But that’s all.)
Fast forward to 2012 when the biggest free agent of the NFL was tearfully announced by the man himself – Manning, along with Jim Irsay, who needs to practice his fake crying.
When word spread that the Chiefs were interested in Manning, I was not thrilled. But I allowed myself to get swept up in Manning Fever. Let’s say I had tepid Manning Fever – nothing some Tylenol wouldn’t cure. My support was mostly to prepare myself in case the Chiefs signed the enemy.
Thankfully, out of all the teams and divisions in the NFL, Manning chose to grace the AFC West with his presence – not, as we all know, as a Chief, but as a Bronco.
I don’t know about you, but I am excited about this. Twice a year we will get a chance at redemption for that playoff loss? A chance to play spoiler to his comeback year? Watching the great Manning struggle against Romeo “Defensive Genius” Crennel? A chance to have a strong, relevant Broncos/Chiefs rivalry again? Yes, PLEASE.
Just think what fun we will have watching Tamba Hali closing in on Manning, while Manning is scrambling for the sideline. Ah, replays of John Elway and the late Derrick Thomas dance in my head. As the game clock ticks down to its last seconds, imagine a desperate Peyton Manning thumbing through the playbook, futilely searching for that one last play to put the Broncos on top. What a delicious sight that will be!
I relish the idea that EVERY YEAR we have a chance to prevent the Great Peyton Manning, and by proxy, the Broncos, from making it to the playoffs. Who’s with me?
Welcome to the West, Manning.