Monday, September 20, 2010

Peyton Wedgies Eli

By Tony Mangia


Let's finally put to rest all of the comparisons between Giants quarterback Eli Manning and his older brother Peyton. All the hype for Manning Bowl II had the air sucked out of it 8:16 into the game. A masterful opening drive by the Colts and their field commander Peyton had every New York player looking like they will be wearing big brother's hand-me-downs for another four years.

The Colts rebounded from last week's surprise loss to the Houston Texans with a resounding beat-down of the Giants 38-14. The game wasn't even as close as the score indicates. Big bro came out with mostly running plays on the opening drive and when the Giants defense altered their scheme by bringing in the safeties to foil the running attack, Peyton had his way in getting the ball to his open receivers.

Giants' defensive coach Perry Fewell's plan to use nickel backs to stop the pass and use heavy line rotation to tire the home team's offensive line was thwarted by the Colts' "low-power" running game and Peyton's no-huddle offense. The Colts looked like they were toying with the Giants' over-rated D. The opening drive of 80 yards and a second TD drive--98 yards--had the Giants looking like last year's 8-8 version.


The Colts shredded the Giants' defense for 160 yards and a 24-0 halftime lead. The Giants master plan of running over a "soft" Colt defense that gave up 256 yards last week was dismantled as soon as they had to play catch up. Ahmad Bradshaw scurried for 89 yards on 17 carries and seems to have earned the starting job from Brandon Jacobs. Jacobs was pulled from the game for going east-west when he should have been plowing through the line. The useless Jacobs left the field and threw his helmet 10 yards into the stands. The toss was two yards more than he gained all day.

Jacobs claimed he meant to lob the helmet to the bench but it got stuck on adhesive tape and flew into the stands. The pouting Jacobs said, "It was a mistake." "The whole world could be falling on me and I wouldn't mean to do that." The world maybe, but last night it looked like the whole Indianapolis defense was falling on the 265 pound running back. A fan refused, at first, to return the souvenir. The hard-headed Jacobs probably doesn't need it anyway and the NFL will soon be knocking on his door.

The outcome of the game could be revealed by the actions of the family afterwards. The brothers had a quick handshake at midfield then retreated to their locker rooms. Mom, Olivia, and dad, Archie, were waiting in the tunnel to console Eli while, the normally not media shy, Peyton declined to be interviewed for the NBC post game report. In his press conference, a sullen looking Peyton played the part of the bullying brother who got scolded and regrets monkey-bumping his weaker sibling. It's a feeling any brother can understand.



Tonight's commemoration of the monument to George Steinbrenner is turning into a real love fest. The news that ex-Yankee manager, Joe Torre, and fan favorite, Don Mattingly will be coming to Yankee Stadium for the first time since 2007 has everyone involved feeling warm and fuzzy. The team invited both men to help unveil the presentation in Monument Park. The ex-owner, who passed away this spring, will have a plaque nestled in amongst Yankee greats like Yogi, the Mick and the Yankee Clipper. Torre, a four-time World Series Champion manager with the Yankees, left the team under unfriendly circumstances and and soured the Yankee brass more by releasing a sometimes derogatory book, "The Yankee Years." Donnie Baseball was passed over as Yankee manager after Torre left. Nothing like a death in the family to make everything right.


Bedbugs continue to plague New York City and frequent all the hip stores. After checking out the latest lines at Victoria's Secret and Abercrombie and Fitch, the little critters have invaded Nike's flagship store on 57th Street. The store was closed for extermination on Saturday. Michael "Air" Jordan could probably relate. It's like having a few thousand little Dennis Rodmans in the house.

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