Remember last week, when everybody dismissed Colts owner Jim Irsay as the crazy old guy who just happened to inherit the team from his dad? And maybe that still holds, but he's Monday's big winner after the Colts manhandled the Broncos, 39-33.
And thanks to exclusive footage that will air Wednesday night on Showtime's Inside the NFL, we know what Irsay told his team in the moments after the victory.
"That other guy next door (Peyton Manning), is one of the greats and I have nothing but gratitude towards what he's done for this team," the owner said. "But today is today. And we all know that we want to go and get this (Irsay holds up his right hand with the Super Bowl ring on it). Anyone who doesn't want more than one of these shouldn't wear a horseshoe because that's what it's about."
Relative to Irsay's remarks before the game, these seem benign.
Still, the Inside the NFL panel questioned the owner's decision to kick that dead horse one last time.
Dan Marino: "My opinion, no (Irsay shouldn't have made the postgame comments). There is no reason for that. I mean, they won the ballgame. As an owner, you have to feel pretty darn lucky to have Peyton Manning for 14 years and win a ring. There are a lot of guys who have played in the NFL and have been great players including me, I feel like I was a good player, and I don't have a ring. So I don't think you go there at all."
Cris Collinsworth: "You know, why go back? I mean go back in the locker room when they turn off the cameras and go, 'Like I said guys, I love Peyton Manning but it's about the ring!' You know, and use it to fire them up. But I wouldn't do it on camera, no."
Phil Simms: "Let it go. Never say the word. Don't talk about Super Bowl rings. Don't bring up Peyton's name, the other quarterback. Let it go."
In case you're just back from Mars and missed the backstory, here's the short version: In the days leading up to the Peyton Returns to Indy! Bowl, Irsay made some questionable comments about Manning, and in the process insinuated that former coach Tony Dungy and team president Bill Polian failed to live up to expectations.
That led to a whole thing, one Manning steered clear of, while everyone else took up his cause. Former Colts coach Tony Dungy even suggested that Irsay was trying to provoke Manning, a theory we shot down because, as we wrote Sunday morning, "This is like Irsay trying to distract a bear by poking it with a branding iron. Instead of confusing the bear, Irsay instead made the bear lose its mind and is promptly the victim of a vicious attack -- at his own doing."
By Monday morning, Irsay was enjoying some some post-victory Tweetenfraude.
As OWNER,Buck stops with U;In 1997 n January 2012,alone n the room,plotting the vision 4 Greatness! Strategically decades of success follows— Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay) October 21, 2013
Thanks 2 many ignorant n mean spirited media types,only some,certaInly not all;Man you helped FIRE UP our team..you were AWESOME! Thank YOU!— Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay) October 21, 2013
Through seven weeks there's no denying that the Colts are one of the best teams in the NFL. They've earned that distinction, and Irsay's earned the right to crow about it. In the meantime, he'll be praying for you, haters.
I do pray for you unhappy,shit-slingers...who wants to live on a planet with those who don't like themselves..we want happy,kind people:)— Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay) October 21, 2013
Inside the NFL airs on Showtime Wednesday's at 9 p.m. ET.