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Unhappy Homecoming for Peyton Manning in Indy

Peyton Manning played nice, but you know it was eating him up inside.

Peyton Manning played nice, but you know it was eating him up inside.

It was not a happy homecoming for Peyton Manning in Indianapolis, who on Sunday played his first game at Lucas Oil Stadium since being released by the Colts in March 2012. Not for the visiting team, anyway.

Manning’s Broncos faced off against his former team, led by quarterback Andrew Luck, who is in his second season as a starter since being drafted No. 1 overall out of Stanford.

In the week leading up to the game there was intense hype over the long-awaited matchup, thanks in large part to the big mouth of Colts owner Jim Irsay.

The bumbling wannabe celebrity sparked a media firestorm early last week with remarks he made during an interview with USA Today which were clearly aimed at disparaging Manning.

Irsay was his typical arrogant self boasting his team’s “new model” for winning championships and chided the “old model” (Manning) for only having won one. Then he was his typical backpedalling self, jerking back and forth between being conciliation and defiance.

Irsay filled in any downtime in between with a bunch of his trademark Twitter rants. Many of which come late night and, despite his assertions, certainly seem like a machine that runs on alcohol.

If there was any justice in the world, the Colts would’ve had their asses handed to them after Irsay’s  pathetically self-indulgent display. Of course we all know there isn’t, which is why people like Irsay get to coast through life pretending his father’s accomplishments are his own.

Though Denver was able to claw back into the game late, it really wasn’t even as close as the final 39-33 score indicates. Indy was up by 12 points at halftime and 19 at the start of the fourth quarter.

The Broncos scored two touchdowns within five minutes, which narrowed the deficit to just six. But when Adam Vinatieri added a final field goal for the Colts, putting them up by two scores, it put the game out of reach for Denver.

Manning may have dominated Luck on the stat sheet, but nobody knows better than him how hollow stats can be—they lose all meaning if you don’t win.

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