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Credit Irsay: Favre to Colts, Nothing But Funny

In this day of digital media and social networking, it’s amazing how one simple tweet can cause mass chaos. On Sunday, when Indianapolis Colts’ owner Jim Irsay tweeted, “Brad,I’m in Hattiesburg…is it right or left at the Firechief?”, chaos welcomed company. Today, ESPN and dozens of media outlets are now following this as one of their lead stories. Leaving many to not only question if Peyton Manning will be ready for the regular season opener, but also if the Colts are actually interested in pursuing the services of the 41 year old Brett Favre, the former star quarterback who simply can’t escape the headlines.

Give Jim Irsay credit, he not only got us, he got us good. The fact that this is even a story speaks volumes to the persona that Jim Irsay has created on Twitter. Through his giveaways, rock ‘n roll song lyrics, and trippy sayings, Jim Irsay is nothing short of a hot commodity on twitter, eclipsing 53,000 followers, a status that only a very select few have obtained. He’s a person that people simply want to follow. With one simple tweet, Jack….er I mean….Jim didn’t try to dodge and jump his way over the health candlestick of Peyton Manning, he ignited it himself, raising even more questions about the status of the Colts’ superstar quarterback.

However, let’s put these questions to rest. As former Colts’ head coach Tony Dungy said on NBC’s Sunday Night Football, Peyton Manning will play the opener “unless he’s dead”. The quarterback has already demonstrated an exceptional threshold for pain, playing through a broken jaw in a 2001 regular season game against the Miami Dolphins in which he suffered a helmet to chin blow by then Dolphin defensive end Lorenzo Bromell. For a more recent history lesson, look no further than the first regular season games of 2008, when Peyton Manning played on a knee that was freshly removed from an infected bursa sac surgery and was clearly not one hundred percent. His production was below his normal high standards for these first few regular season games, but #18 still remained the Colts’ best option for winning games, going on to win the MVP that season due to his overall gritty performance.

Even logistically, Brett Favre doesn’t make sense. What makes anyone think Brett Favre is going to trade in “his tractor and back forty”, so he can get let his body get hammered once again by 300+ pound lineman, especially when it’s only going to be for one or two starts. Favre doesn’t need the money, the championships, or the inflicted pain. Dig into the issue even further, and it makes even less sense when one considers that Favre is a West Coast system quarterback that has never played with any of these Colts’ receivers, no…not even Reggie Wayne at a Pro-Bowl. Three weeks is a short time to both learn a system and get used to new receivers.  Even then, it’s unlikely that Brett Favre is even in pro football shape. When considering Favre, there are simply too many drawbacks to overlook.

Now if the Colts were to express serious interest or sign a stopgap quarterback like recently retired Kerry Collins or former team backup Jim Sorgi, then it’s time to worry. As the Titans’ starting quarterback last year, Collins is all too familiar with the AFC South, and Sorgi should know the Colts’ offensive system just as well as anyone, having carried a clipboard around as Manning’s understudy for several years. However, for the mean time, sit back, relax, and get a nice chuckle out of all the commotion that Jim Irsay’s tweet caused. Laugh easy because this one is on us. Colts’ fans are fortunate enough to have a unique owner who genuinely cares about his team and its fans and just likes to entertain, even if it’s at our expense from time to time. Think about it, why joke unless all signs point to Peyton Manning being ready for the 9/11 opener against the Houston Texans? The only ones who shouldn’t be laughing right now are the members of the Texan defense, as they fully prepare for life against Peyton Manning because more than likely, that’s who will be under center for “only” his 209th straight time.

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