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Opening Arguments

Team spirit


Two days after Peyton Manning complained about the dour atmosphere around the Colts' complex, team owner Jim Irsay called his four-time league MVP a "politician" and said he didn't appreciate Manning's public campaign.

The comments upstaged the introduction of Irsay's new coach, Chuck Pagano, and came six weeks before Irsay must decide whether to pay the still-recovering Manning a $28 million bonus. Manning missed the entire 2011 season after having his third neck surgery in September.

Lots of proverbs apply here: Don't air your dirty linen in public, don't bite the hand that feeds you, don't tell tales out of school, don't look a gift horse in the mouth, Don't rock the boat or upset the applecart. Most of us have badmouthed our employers from time to time, sometimes accurately, sometimes with a bitterness that makes us exaggerate corporate shortcomings and overestimate our own worth. It's human nature, and a certain amount of griping is probably even good for a company.

But we're generally pretty careful about when, where and with whom we share out disaffections. Having drinks with two or three trusted co-workers creates a good bitchin'-'bout-the-boss atmosphere. Addressing the assembled multidudes at the company picnic is not a good idea. Airing your complaints when the TV cameras are rolling seems especially clueless.

And here's the thing, Peyton: You're bad-mouthing the people who are trying to decide whether to pay you a $28 million bonus after you contributed absolutely nothing to the team efforts for an entire year? Seriously? And "dour" atmosphere? Could that have something to do with, oh, I don't know, a 2-and-14 record that your absence was chiefly the cause of?

Posted in: Hoosier lore, Sports


Harl Delos
Fri, 01/27/2012 - 2:47pm

It's somewhat unfair to blamr the 2-14 record on Peyton's abxence; after all, he was absent from both teams....