I may be the only person in America who is sick and tired of Peyton Manning. Let me get the praise out of the way first. Peyton Manning is a great quarterback, definitely a top three QB in the league today. Peyton will also go down as one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game once he is retired. Peyton is so great and fantastic blah blah blah.
I am sick of the love for Peyton Manning. There are hundreds and hundreds of players in the NFL, but only Peyton can star in every single commercial? My whole life has seen Peyton do every commercial known to man, and in 2012 nothing was different. I can’t recall how many times I saw Peyton Manning go out and force Papa John to give away a million more free pizzas than Papa was comfortable with. Or see Peyton Manning audible his Buick car to reroute to “Papa Bears” house…”Hey Peyton, just got done firing up the grill!”
Now, I don’t wish injury on anyone, in any sport. Peyton Manning had a pretty healthy and long career until he sat out the entire 2011 season after having neck surgery. While many people were upset and hoping for Manning to come back at some point of the season, I sat back and enjoyed the other stars the NFL has to offer. Again, I wasn’t glad that Peyton was hurt, but it was nice to have a season where the Peyton Manning talk died down for once over the past decade, where the pregame talk show hosts focused on other players and not just number 18.
Of course, after the 2011 season, Manning was going to be a free agent. Teams saw how bad the Indianapolis Colts were without him, only earning two wins in his absence. The consensus was that the Colts were going to take quarterback Andrew Luck with the number one overall pick, and kick off a new generation of Colt football. The last time the Indianapolis Colts had the number one pick was back in 1998, when they selected another ‘must pick’ QB in Manning. Fun fact, Peyton Manning was actually supposed to enter the NFL draft in 1997, when you guessed it, the New York Jets had the first overall pick. Bill Parcells was making it known Peyton was going to be his first pick, and I guess the thought of being a Jet scared Peyton so much he ran back to college for another year.
Once Peyton Manning hit free agency, he was again all of the talk of football fans, and rightfully so. There were questions about his neck and age, but many teams still wanted that chance. There had to have been 31 NFL teams checking in with Manning during free agency. Even if teams like the Saints or Packers didn’t need a QB, they still would be wise to kick the tires and maybe drive up the price for a rival to obtain him. Peyton ultimately chose Denver and instantly made them a contender. While the playoffs ended for Peyton like they usually do (with a loss), Denver fans have a lot to look forward too. The comeback player of the year will look to have a great season in 2013, and we will see at least five new commercials with Peyton in them, guaranteed.