“Unremitting verbal ejaculations of hype”.
In the quotes above, that describes Peyton Manning’s professional football career since it began in 1998. He’s the undisputed greatest regular season quarterback of all-time. He owns almost all the passing records, and at the old athlete age of 37 he’s continuing to build this mega path of regular season excellence. His current touchdown to interception ratio this season stands at 16 touchdowns to 0 interceptions. He’s on pace to pass for 64 touchdowns. Impressive.
But not as impressive as what Tom Brady is doing in New England.
Brady has nobody. The man (who I consider to be the second greatest quarterback of all-time, arguably 1B to Joe Montana’s 1A) took a paycut in order to allow the Patriots to pay Wes Welker (who bolted for the Denver Broncos and Manning). After that fell through, Brady has no consolation prize at the receiver position after the loss of Welker. Brandon Lloyd left the game, the Pats let Danny Woodhead head over to the Chargers, and now what?
Patriots’ tight end Rob Gronkowski has been out all season, the other tight end Aaron Hernandez apparently killed a guy (and was consequently cut by the team), the Patriots signed Danny Amendola (one of my favorite players in the league; former Ram) but he’s battling injury problems and has hardly played much football this year… and the rest of the Pats? Yeah, asides from Julian Edelman, I can’t name after player from their receiving core.
Despite Brady and the Pats’ plight, they are 4-0, and Brady’s been playing some brilliant football with a few scrubs off the streets at receiver and nary a running game.
Peyton and the Broncos are also 4-0, but Manning is set. He has options: Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker, Wes Welker, Julius Thomas, Joel Dreessen… the list goes on.
Peyton is doing what he always does in regular seasons: dominate. And with superior weapons than one Tom Brady.
Have Manning come to Foxborough in January and let’s see if he performs. Let’s face it… Peyton’s career is one letdown (a lot of lets) after another marred by losses when games matter the most: the postseason. The year he won the Super Bowl, he played very mediocre in the playoffs and the team was carried by Bob Sanders (who’d just recently returned from an injury) and the rest of the defense. Manning and the Colts then had the luxury of playing against Rex Grossman (the worst quarterback to ever appear in a Super Bowl since Vince Ferragamo from the ’79-’80 Los Angeles Rams) and the Chicago Bears.
But that’s then. This is now. And both quarterbacks lead 4-0 teams going into today. I’m not discounting Manning’s season, but I’m simply more impressed with Brady’s performance given how limited he and the Pats are compared to the loaded, vaunted Broncos’ offense.
You might say, “But Troy! The Patriots haven’t played anybody asides from the ailing Atlanta Falcons!”
So? The Broncos haven’t played anyone whatsoever, asides from the Ravens (a mediocre team this year, despite being defending Super Bowl champions). They dominated Peyton’s brother Eli and the Giants in week two, but why don’t you go ahead and tell me how the Giants are doing this year. In weeks 3 and 4, the Broncos beat up on the abysmal Raiders and new-look Eagles respectively.
The Broncos have only played one away game while the Patriots have played two, and what’s more impressive with the Pats is that they waltzed into Atlanta in primetime and took the air out of the Georgia Dome against the Falcons.
Yes, asides from Matt Ryan, Tom Brady’s had the joy of playing against two rookie quarterbacks (EJ Manuel and Geno Smith) and an embattled (with a coach) one (Josh Freeman), but again, who in the hell is he throwing to?
The Patriots could fall today. They visit the Bengals in Cincinnati, who were flat out embarrassed by the Browns last Sunday.
Peyton Manning’s domination will likely continue. He and the Broncos visit the Cowboys in Dallas, and he gets to go up against Monty Kiffin’s defense. Why is that noteworthy? When former Colts’ head coach Tony Dungy (who coached Manning from ’02-’08) was the coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kiffin was the defensive coordinator. When Dungy was fired from Tampa and went to Indianapolis, he took that very same, exact defense with him and for over seven years Peyton practiced against that defense, so I’m sure Manning will send the Cowboys to a record of 2-3.