John, you ignorant simp
Some people think we've beat the Peyton Manning thing into the turf. We think these people are idiots and should finally accept the truth in all its bright, sparkling and beautiful clarity.
We will continue our assault on foolish Peyton Manning rumpswabs until the truth about his annual postseason swoon lords over the football universe and these donkeys finally admit that the weight of every single Indy playoff loss rests squarely on the shrugging, overpaid shoulders of Mr. Manning and on no one else. We are forced to continue the attack if only because there are so many Manning apologists out there who continue to blame everyone but him for Indy's playoff woes. In the process, they perpetuate the biggest myth in all of sports: the myth that a porous Indy defense is the source of Manning's playoff failures.
We thought Manning's implosion in the 2003-04 AFC title game would have silenced the butt boys (yes, we're talking about you Prisco) once and for all. But there they were, in last offseason's round ups and previews, touting Manning as the greatest player in football. But for sure, we thought, people will finally get it after Indy's mighty regular-season offense (32.6 PPG) crumbled in a 20-3 playoff loss to New England. It was the third biggest offensive disaster in NFL postseason history (as measured by the differential between regular-season scoring average and performance in a playoff game).
Still, the blind, screaming banzai attack by Manning apologists continues unabated.
Note a recent spot with John Madden on NFL Total Access. Madden was interviewed by Rich Eisen as the NFL Network previewed the 2005 Monday Night Football schedule. Of course, the top game on the docket this year is Indy at New England on Nov. 7. Host and guest discussed the inability of the Colts to beat the Patriots and, more specifically, their inability to advance to the Super Bowl year after year, despite annually having one of the best regular-season offenses in football.
Madden chimed in on behalf of the ignorant, Manning rumpswabs: "The problem isn't Peyton Manning," said Madden. The problem, he said, is the Indy defense.
The Cold, Hard Football Facts tell quite a different story. Manning and, by extension, the Indy offense, are the sole cause of Indy's failures in at least four of its five playoff losses, and shoulder a considerable burden in the fifth playoff loss. The Indy defense, meanwhile, has held up remarkably well in all but one of the team's playoff losses, despite being hamstrung in every single game by an offense that tanked worse Gigli.
Here's an encapsulated look at Indy's Manning-era offensive and defensive performances in the regular season and, again, in its playoff losses those five years.
The Indy defense surrendered 20.8 PPG in the regular season. The Indy offense averaged 26.4 PPG. Manning posted a regular-season passer rating of 90.7.
The Colts bowed out of the playoffs with a 19-16 loss to Tennessee. Manning posted a passer rating of 60.9 – his worst game of the season.
The Indy defense surrendered 20.4 PPG in the regular season. The Indy offense averaged 26.8 PPG. Manning posted a regular-season passer rating of 94.7.
The Colts bowed out of the playoffs with a 23-17 overtime loss to Miami. Manning posted a passer rating of 82.0 – the best performance of his career in a playoff loss, but fifth worst of the season.
The Indy defense surrendered 19.6 PPG in the regular season. The Indy offense scored 21.8 PPG. Manning posted a regular-season passer rating of 88.8.
The Colts bowed out of the playoffs with a 41-0 loss to the New York Jets. Manning posted a passer rating of 31.2 – the single worst game of his career.
The Indy defense surrendered 21.0 PPG in the regular season. The Indy offense scored 27.9 PPG. Manning posted a regular-season passer rating of 99.0.
The Colts bowed out of the playoffs with a 24-14 loss to New England. Manning posted a passer rating of 35.5 – his worst game of the season and third worst of his career.
The Indy defense surrendered 21.9 PPG in the regular season. The Indy offense scored 32.6 PPG. Manning posted an NFL-record regular-season passer rating of 121.1.
The Colts bowed out of the playoffs with a 20-3 loss to the New England. Manning posted a passer rating of 69.3 – his worst game of the season.
A simple look at the Cold, Hard Football Facts makes clear that Manning and the offense, and not the Colts defense, is the source of Indy's playoff failures.
• In four of five playoff losses, the Indy defense has played very well compared with its regular-season performances
• In four of five playoff losses, Manning played his single worst game of the season
• In all five playoff losses, the Indy offense was held below its regular-season scoring average
• Only once in five playoff losses did the Indy defense surrender more than 24 points
• Only once in five playoff losses did Manning post a passer rating of better than 70.0
• In its five playoff seasons, the Indy defense has surrendered an average 20.7 PPG
• In its five playoff losses, the Indy defense has surrendered an average of 25.4 PPG (with 41 scored in a single game)
• In its five playoff seasons, the Indy offense has averaged 27.1 PPG
• In its five playoff losses, the Indy offense has averaged a woeful 10.0 PPG (and just 5.7 PPG in the last three seasons)
The most damning indictment is this: If the Indy offense had merely replicated its regular-season scoring average in its five playoff losses, the Colts would be 4-1 in those five games.
So riddle us this, friends of the Cold, Hard Football Facts: Is the Indy defense the problem, or is it Peyton Manning?
Now you know the answer. If only the so-called "pundits" got it, too, we wouldn't be subjected to this annual onslaught of ignorance.
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