The Manning Bowl: For Peyton And Eli, It's Just Another Game in The Back Yard
Brothers' rivalries are nothing new, but when it comes to Peyton and Eli Manning it is quite literally on a different playing field.
Peyton, Eli, and their so-called “rivalry” will be played out in front of millions on a national stage. And in this case there won’t be an instance they won’t tell mom about because mom, like everyone else, will be watching.
Never have two brothers, at the same time, been as good as these two are. Peyton is light years ahead of Eli but Eli has proven himself worthy over the last few years and is even with Peyton in the one statistic that really matter; Super Bowl wins.
To call this game and their relationship a "rivalry" is simply a tool the NFL and NBC are attempting to use to get get viewers and sell tickets. These two have displayed nothing but unwavering support for one another and what rivalry has one game to it's credit?
Whether you call this a rivalry or a family affair, it should be one hell of a game to watch on Sunday night.
Week One For The Brothers Came With Mixed Results
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Each brother has their own challenges this season and the result of Sunday night’s match-up featuring Peyton’s Colts and Eli’s Giants could go a long way in determining the success each has for the remainder of the 2010 season.
The “Manning Bowl” as some are calling it, may be more pivotal for Indianapolis due to their week one loss to the Houston Texans, although a win for Eli could gain both himself and his team some credibility in the NFC East.
In week one both suffered their bumps and bruises but played fairly well. Peyton, in a comeback effort that fell short, threw the ball 57 times completing 40 passes for 433 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions.
The Colts’ 24-34 loss to the Texans was just the second all-time against the franchise, bringing the all-time series record to 15-2.
Eli threw for 263 yards, completed 30-of-40 pass attempts with three touchdowns and three interceptions in a 31-18 win over the Carolina Panthers.
Winning the first game of the season is nothing new for the brothers, Peyton despite last week’s loss is 9-4 all-time in week one games and Eli is 4-2, one loss coming against Peyton in 2006.
Second Time Around
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In the 26-21 Colts’ victory, Eli played well in a losing effort throwing for 247 yards on 20-of-34 passing with two touchdowns and one interception, maybe even outplaying his brother. Peyton completed 25-of-41 passing attempts for 276 yards and one touchdown to one interception.
Despite what many will tell you, the result of this game will not put either team in a position in which they can’t recover from. But for Peyton, a week one loss coupled with what proved to be the Super Bowl clinching interception he threw in February, is making it extremely difficult to avoid whispers of the infamous Super Bowl hangover.
Pass Protection Will Be Key
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Last week’s loss could largely be attributed to the defense of the Colts but Indy’s pass protection was less efficient than Matt Millen on draft day. Peyton never really got comfortable and was forced to release some passes before he was really ready to do so.
Pass protection for the most part has been a luxury for the Colts over the years but most recently with injuries and little progression for younger linemen, it has proved to be a thorn in the proverbial side of the Colts’ offense.
Peyton’s quick release allowed him to rack up yards last week but with Osi Umenyiora, Justin Tuck and company waiting in the wings, Indy could face another uphill battle.
The Giants Could Only Use Victory As A Confindence Builder
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Peyton will be fine whether his Colts continue their stumble out of the gate or not. Eli on the other hand is far less established than his older brother, despite helping bring a Super Bowl title to New York.
In no way is he in danger of losing his job, he is the franchise quarterback for the Giants but in the eyes of the New York media and many Giants fans, both he and his team have underachieved since winning it all in 2008.
A victory Sunday would in all reality only provide a boost in confidence for New York and not much else. The Giants started out strong in 2009, winning their first five games but went on to lose four-in-a-row, eventually going 3-8 after their hot start, finishing the season 8-8.
But like the old adage goes, “a win is a win,” and the more wins the Giants get early, the greater likelihood they find themselves in the playoffs come January.
Colts' and Giants' Defense Could Prove To Be More Important
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The spotlight in this game is obviously on the two brothers, but it could potentially come down to the two defenses. The rush defense last week for the Colts was like a good episode of Jersey Shore, nonexistent.
Indy allowed Arian Foster to earn 231 yards in week one and if Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw can get going on Sunday night, New York could find themselves keeping pace with the Pro Bowl laden offense on the other side. Let's see if the dynamic duo and the Giants can do some fist pumping of their own.