Sunday, May 23, 2004

Indianapolis Colts

     I always felt a kinship to Indiana. We both have snow. We fought on the same side in the Civil War, and I know that there were Indiana folk in the Iron Brigade. When the deal went down at Gettysburg, the Hoosiers held their ground. We both love our basketball- hell, you gave us Larry Bird, as well as Bobby Knight, John Wooden, James Dean, Karl Malden, David Letterman and Jane Pauley. We have our Rockwell winter villages, and you have your Steinbeck wholesome farm scene that most of us would be happy to call home. People from Indiana will always be well met on my porch. Y'all's good people.

    Always the fan, I thought I'd share my thoughts on the Colts with you. I always liked the basic layout of the Colts. Here's why:

- Peyton, despite his Best Supporting Actress name, may be the best QB in the NFL- although he'd have an argument from Brady's people about how much more difficult it is to throw with 2 Super Bowl rings on. His kid brother is a punk, but so are ALL kid brothers.

    Peyton is so Americana, he sweats milk. Peyton's also a young guy who gets bewitched by the nefarious defensive schemes of Coach Belly and his gluttonous coordinators. Experience will change that....or Seymour hits him so much, he gets concussed and starts thinking he's Archie- screaming at Edith and Meathead while his contract cripples the team.

- Edge looks whiter when he plays with U2, but he has a frightening combination of power and speed. He's got that whole Big Jim Slade thing going, too- I'll bet that Mrs. James is a very happy woman. Until he can punch it in at Gillette Stadium, though, he'll always be the "Razor's" Edge. If you say "McGinest" near him, he falls to the ground and quivers.

- Harrison has been the coolest Marvin in America since Gaye died, and since Messy sank from prominence. However, if he and Ty Law were in prison, Marvin would be earning Newports for Ty. When his contract runs out and you don't give him Manning money, he'll be fleeing to whatever conference Belichick and Ty aren't in.

    Still, those are three boys you could ride to a title. A high powered offense that few could match. They are perfectly capable of throwing 35 points up on a Super Bowl team. Hasn't happened yet, though. Probably isn't going to.  Why?

    Indy managed to get the #1 and #2 pick in the draft a few years ago. A huge DL, and a monster LB. They both flopped. On Draft Day, you had a D that was potentially evil. Fate drove both men from the NFL- and as surely as the Red Sox traded Babe Ruth and sucked for 90 years, the Indy defense has never recovered. They were Cursed.

    This malicious Quentemtman Curse has doomed Indy to be the Easy Whore of Mister Touchdown for all eternity. A bottlecap on the lawn defends more turf. Dungy- who has proven himself to be a terrific defensive coach in his prior jobs- will be helpless against it. It isn't his fault- this Curse would make Patton cry like like a sissy. If you draft players for defense, they'll flop. If you sign proven talent, they'll get injured. You will rage against the dying of the light, but darkness will enfold you as surely as Curses must be fed. I'm from Salem...I understand these things.

    This may seem hard to fathom, but it is easy to see from here. People in Salem have a keen understanding of Curses. Giles Corey cursed Salem before he died from pressing- and sheriffs have died here ever since. Corey was no wimp, either. His last words were "More weight".

    We New Englanders have our own Sports Curse, and can attest to the validity of the phenomena. Pedro will tire, Dent will clear the Monster, and Buckner will falter- all with a little help from the cruel hand of Providence. It hits other teams, as well. Ever notice how the Los Angeles Clippers never get the #1 pick whenever someone good is available? Someone crossed Miss Karma out there. Ever see Buffalo blow field goals? Same thing. Once the Curse is proclaimed, the damage does itself. Ask the Cubs- they are being held back by a billy goat Curse.

    Indiana is no stranger to Curses. They laid a great one on the country. The Battle of Tippecanoe was fought there. From this sprang the Curse of Tecumseh, which struck down men such as Lincoln, JFK and FDR. Reagan's surgeon managed to stop this Curse, but that merely created a Vacuum- one which could only be filled by the Quentemtman Curse.

    The people in charge tried, and are still trying. They hired a top notch defensive coach. They used their top pick on a safety who is shorter than Julia Roberts, and they may have signed someone good- it doesn't matter. The Curse makes its' own rules, and it cares not for who it ruins.

    I'd love to see a likable bunch of kids from the Heartland rise up and smash the wicked chain of Destiny. It's hard not to like Indy. Offense is charismatic. Still, they face a daunting task. You can put 34 points up on a good team, but it will do you no good if they get 38 on you. The Curse works in many a strange and wonderful way.

    Maybe some day they will win in the snow, not throw to Ty Law, and not get stuffed like a November Turkey on fourth and one with seconds left. When they can do that, they will be championship caliber. They will have beaten the Quentemtman Curse.

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