Super Bowl XLVIII wasn’t Peyton Manning’s best day. It probably was one of his worst. But the idea that Manning needed to win that game to secure his place in the history of the NFL is just flat out ridiculous. Manning is one of the three or four best quarterbacks to ever play the game. That’s not debatable. Hundreds of wins, passing stats and records galore and oh by the way, five MVPs sit in his trophy case. That’s more than one-tenth of the total number given out in the NFL. I am sure that losing his second Super Bowl wasn’t something that was going to change all that. In fact, I know it didn’t.
For people who want to focus on his post season performance, I implore you to look at list of Hall of Famers who have lost two Super Bowls in their career. Jim Kelly, Fran Tarkenton, Roger Staubach and John Elway are on that list. Losing a Super Bowl doesn’t make you a choke artist. To try and tear down Peyton Manning’s legacy because he’s lost two Super Bowls or had eight “one-and-done” playoff exits, is just silly. Peyton did not lose all of those games by himself, nor did he play poorly in all of those games. In fact, some of the worst statistical performances by Manning in the post season were games that his team won!
You can call me a Manning-lover or any other variety of names, but the facts that Manning had created a legacy prior to that game is indisputable. The myopic, short-sighted idea that he isn’t in the discussion of the greatest quarterbacks ever is just that. I always marvel at the hate for Manning. He has been the face of two franchises – as well as the NFL, has continued to play at the highest level of the sport, on a consistent basis, who always says the right things and is funny as hell away from football. How could you not love him? That part of his legacy will change in time.
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