Blog Entry

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Posted on: February 8, 2012 5:37 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2012 2:51 pm
Assuming he's healthy, all signs are pointing to Manning playing elsewhere in 2012. (Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

Peyton Manning's change in fortune has been swift. Prior to the 2011 season, the general perception of what he meant to Indianapolis went something like this: he had singlehandedly saved the Colts from themselves, led them to a Super Bowl title in 2006, and his accomplishments were the currency that helped fund Lucas Oil Stadium.

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Now, days removed from Super Bowl XLVI -- hosted in Indianapolis by the way -- Manning has gone from patron saint of the city to public enemy No. 1. Maybe that's a slight exaggeration but not by much.

In the weeks prior to the Giants-Patriots matchup, Manning spoke with the Indianapolis Star's Bob Kravitz about his future with the Colts. The takeaway: Peyton had no intentions of retiring, even if his future wasn't with in Indy.

Owner Jim Irsay fired back, calling Manning "a politician," the two then issued a joint statement professing great love and admiration for one another. And that appeared to be that. Neither side spoke in specifics about their situations during Super Bowl Week … until Thursday evening, when Manning's camp leaked word that Manning had been medically cleared to play. This was news to everyone, including Irsay, who tweeted hours later that "Peyton has not passed our physical nor has he been cleared to play for The Indianapolis Colts."

And it was at that point that the public, which had firmly supported Peyton basically since the moment he was drafted in 1998, began to view the franchise quarterback differently.

During a Wednesday appearance on "The Tony Kornheiser Show," Kravitz talked about the he-said, he-said back-and-forth posturing by both camps and what it means for the future of Peyton and the Colts.

"I think people are starting to sway over to Jim Irsay's side on this," Kravitz told Kornheiser. "… It's such a no-brainer. It's been a no-brainer since they went to 0-13. He could give them money to play football. Andrew Luck has got to play, okay? It's not even about the $35 million anymore. I mean, the guy's arm is a noodle, he can't throw like an NFL quarterback, and by March 8, there's no way of knowing whether he's going to be ready or not."

Wow. "Arm is a noodle" is nowhere near "been medically cleared to play." But that doesn't mean Manning won't be healthy at some point. It's just that nobody knows when.

“I know some of the people that have seen him throw,” Kravitz continued. "They say he’s not throwing like an NFL quarterback yet. That doesn’t mean he never will.  This thing is going to take time. Structurally, he’s sound. Structurally, he can take a hit.”

In response to a question from Kornheiser that "Manning hijacked the Super Bowl," Kravitz responded, "I'm quite sure [Peyton] did it deliberately.

"I lost a lot of -- I don't want to say respect for him -- but I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and not say that his conversation with me was political and calculated, but there's no doubt in my mind that that story breaking Thursday night right around the time every single TV station is doing an exclusive on Andrew Luck (and, it turns out, blog).

"It comes out on Thursday night about six o'clock -- that doesn't come out unless the Peyton Manning camp wants it to come out. They're putting public pressure on Jim Irsay. It was calculated, it was deceptive, I didn't think it was a good time to do it. And, yes, he absolutely stole the Super Bowl. … I don't think there's any doubt that he stole some of the attention away from the Super Bowl.

"Look, that story was going to be there whether he opened his mouth or not, but he had given us every indication that he was going to go underground and only do his Gatorade and DirecTV thing and then shut the hell up," Kravitz said. "And he didn't do that. I thought that that was kind of smarmy. …

"You got Andrew Luck, just start over, I wish they could make the decision today or tomorrow and move on with it. Instead we're just … holding onto something that doesn't really exist."

So, yeah, if it wasn't obvious before, we think it couldn't be clearer now: Peyton's played his last game for the Colts, and Eli was the last Manning to play in Lucas Oil Stadium during the 2011 season.

Now the only question is if the Redskins are still interested in Manning's services. (Obvious answer: of course they are!)

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Since: May 26, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:31 am

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Too much media distortion here. This situation is nothing like what the Green Bay Packers went through with Brett Favre. Rather, it's much more like what the San Francisco 49ers did to Joe Montana almost 20 years ago. This is not to say that Andrew Luck will go on to play like the Hall of Famer Steve Young was, but the situations are parallel.

You have a beloved former MVP coming off of a significant career-threatening injury. The recovery period ended up taking longer than expected. Montana missed close to 2 years, and we don't know how much more time Peyton will need on top of the year he has already missed. Both guys want to play and believe that they have earned the right to assume their regular duties once healthy.

No responsible front office is going to sign off on that. Not with a star-in-the-making already in their pipeline. If you had nobody waiting in the wings it would be a very different story. And I totally understand that. Steve Young or elite prospect Andrew Luck in his prime is a safer bet than a rehabbing Montana or Peyton in his twilight years. In the case of the 49ers they granted Montana's trade request. In the case of the Colts they are going to cut Peyton Manning. The only thing I take issue with is treating the guy who built your franchise like he has now become the villain.

Now Brett Favre really was a villain with the way he yanked Green Bay all over the place. He toyed with them year after year and jeopardized the future success of the team as a result. Montana and Manning do not fit that description. They were/have been as gracious as any self-respecting superstar North American athlete could be. Total gentlemen, as a commenter before me accurately stated. Much more down to earth guys than one might otherwise suspect. These men are legendary and iconic figures in NFL circles. We'll still be talking about them in 20 or 30 years. So don't call Peyton "arrogant". The claim doesn't fit in the context of what arrogance really would look like for a man of his accomplishments.

Montana was not ready to quit football when the 49ers made it clear they were replacing him, but he was ready to change teams. It is the exact same case with Peyton Manning. If and when Peyton is finally healthy again he is not going to quit football just because the Colts say "that's enough". All Peyton is doing is standing up for himself and his career. He is going to call it quits when he is finally and completely done. Is that really such a villainous thing to do?

Since: Jul 17, 2010
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:14 am

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Eli is not even half as good as Peyton.Eli is a spoiled little punk who refused to play for the team that drafted him,that tells you enough about him as a person.I can't stand that little bitch and hope he breaks his leg next year.Peyton all day and twice on sunday.If the Colts let him go,they will regret it and I hope he kicks their butts when he plays them.

Since: Jul 17, 2010
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:09 am

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Wow you people comparing eli to peyton are stupid,peyton is twice the Qb eli will ever be

Since: Jun 29, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:07 am

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Back the Player against the greedy owner and the fans love you, Back the owner and you keep your credentials and your job. MMM lets see, if I am a writer who depends on good will to retain access who do I back?  Peyton is gone so why risk a career backing a dead horse. One other point is make a villan and ESPN will beat a path to your door and since they rank everything why not run a poll of who is the most slimey the player , the owner or  ESPN.

Since: Feb 5, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2012 12:06 am

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

To Irsay, just be careful what you wish for you just might get it.  As a long time Bulls fan, I remember when Krumbs Krause and Reinsdorf kicked Jordan and the rest of the Bulls out after their 6th title only to end up in NBA purgatory for more than a decade.  Even if the Colts get Luck they will still be lucky to be an 8-8 team.  It is rare that a rookie QB leads a team to a winning record, let alone the playoffs.  In the past decade only Rothlisberger, Flacco, Ryan and Dalton have done it and only Rothlisberger's team did anything in the playoffs. His team was the Steelers and was vastly more talented than the Colts current team.  In fact, all of the above teams were vastly more talented than the current Colts, especially on defense.  With a rookie QB, who will only be able to manage an offense, a stout defense is necessary to keep the score close and cover up for the offense's mistakes.  Manning was 1-15 in his rookie year and based on this year's performance I would bet that Luck wouldn't win more than a couple games next year.  Good Luck to Indy fans, their going to need him with that crappy defense.  Once Manning is cut you will have what you wished for, lets see how you like it. 

Since: Mar 20, 2009
Posted on: February 8, 2012 11:36 pm

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

This is the kind of crap that makes me only want to watch college football. Peyton Manning has been - and continues to be - the "best" that the NFL could hope for. He is a professional. He is a gentleman. He is a performer. What changed? He suffered an injury. First time in sports? Hardly. And here we have a professional sports organization using the Public Relations "machine" to try to justify cutting him loose. Facts are facts, folks. I would respect the Colts organization more if they just said "look - we love and respect him, but we have to move toward the future..." or something along those lines. Instead, they are trying to turn the fans against the very man who made them fans again. This is nonsense politics of the worst kind. And, it's not going to work. I feel sorry for Andrew Luck - I really do. The stage is being set for him - without  his input, mind you - where he will inherit a "succeed or die" scenario. Aaron Rodgers was able to do this in a similar scenario in Green Bay, but that is a one-in-a-million proposition. Personally, I don't think I would like to sit at the same table as Irsay - but that's just me. He seems like a total "company man", comfortable in any uniform you give him to wear. 

Since: Oct 5, 2007
Posted on: February 8, 2012 11:25 pm

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Yes the Patriots lost but I don't dwell on it - they will be back. Tongue out

But anyway.......if Peyton plays again it will be for Houston or possibly Miami.
I still question his health.  Not sure why the Irsay clan is going about it this way but the Peyton clan has a lot to do with it too, especially the father.  He is the person stoking it.

We will see

Since: Apr 25, 2009
Posted on: February 8, 2012 11:23 pm

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

More media hype (surprise!) One guy gets interviewed on a syndicated show, tells the host that the city has turned against an athlete in favor of the owner, and lo and behold the views of a few all of a sudden become fact that grows ever more believable just because the headline or a simplistic and biased quote gets repeated over and over again. Of course there is public posturing in the billion dollar world of pro sports, but let's not pretend that any meaningful percentage of the good people of Indianapolis have turned on Peyton Manning. While undoubtedly most everyone there knows his name, I'm not simple-minded enough to actually believe that most of them care much at all about the saga that is the Colts. Most people I know, even die hard sports fans, have a few more important things in their lives that they care about. Oh, and about his arm being a "noodle?" After wathcing him for more than a few years, my sense is that it's what he did with the talent he had and what he has between his ears that made him a great quarterback to watch. All great quarterbacks often perform "above the crowd" in spite of their limitations - that's what makes them scary to other teams and great to watch.

Since: Jan 15, 2007
Posted on: February 8, 2012 11:21 pm

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Speaking as another Indianapolis native and fan: I also have to wonder where Kravtiz is getting this odd notion that the general local public has started to turn towards Irsay and against Manning, because none of the diehard football fans that I know have done so. I have steadily lost respect for Kravitz over the course of this season as he's campaigned hard first to get rid of the Polians and then to get rid of Manning. He (Kravitz) has gotten so full of himself lately, and so cocksure that he knows exactly what's right for the Colts, that I can't take him seriously anymore and wish that he would just go away.

Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: February 8, 2012 11:02 pm

Indy writer on Peyton: His 'arm is a noodle'

Peyton never had a strong arm to begin with

    Holy crap that's a goofy comment.  Manning's arm wasn't a cannon, but it was rated above average for an NFL quarterback.  Was it Jeff George's or John Elways?  No.  But above average, closer to them than to Chad Pennington.  If all you were trying to say was that he didn't throw lasers, you chose a bad way to say it.

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