WRITER’S NOTE: Roy Hobbson already gave his thoughts on this particular topic (unfortunately Bogarting all my thunder in the process) but since I already wrote this before I knew he was doing a similar piece I figure what the hell, might as well put it out there. Hopefully there’s still enough rage in you for 1,600 more words decrying the human filth that is Chris Baldwin.
Many of you have probably come across this particular troll in your own internet sojourning (he wrote an article in September titled, “Peyton Manning gets exposed: Looks like Michael Jordan with Wizards as Wade's Bulls beckon” in which he claimed, among other things, that, “Manning will never come close to being the Peyton of old.” How’d that work out for you Chris?), but he wrote an article so egregious this week that I couldn’t help but fix my troll hunter’s crossbow (trolls are apparently susceptible to crossbows, don’t ask me why, it’s one of life’s great mysteries) squarely on the heart of the embittered Houston beat man.
The article in question has the not so subtle headline, “Peyton Manning completely disrespected by Indianapolis’ fair-weather Andrew Luck love.” The title of the article alone is offensive (and comically stupid) enough, but, and consider this fair warning, actually reading the contents of this asinine tripe of a news story is guaranteed to send you into convulsions of righteous fury. So let’s do this troll a favor and put him down. After all, the only good troll is a dead troll.
"People don't even talk about Peyton Manning anymore," Colts fan Irene McReynolds tells me. "Unless it's too [sic] wonder if Andrew can be even better than him."[sic] I never thought I'd see the day."
She shouldn't be seeing it this soon. Indianapolis is showing just how fair-weather a sports town it is, completely disrespecting the quarterback who put their nowhere hamlet on the map.
Take away a big race that isn't quite so big anymore and Peyton Manning and Indianapolis would be as minor league a sports town as you can get. [sic]
Grammatical errors and poor syntax aside, where to start with this? The entire premise of this man’s smear piece is based on the singular opinion of one Irene McReynolds. Assuming Ms. McReynolds actually exists, her assertion that “people don’t even talk about Peyton Manning anymore” is so vague as to be nearly meaningless.
Who are these “people” she refers to? Her friends? Her family? The entirety of the Colts’ fan community? We will never know and Mr. Baldwin makes no attempt to elaborate, apparently one solitary person claiming that a nebulous group of “people” did something is good enough for his trollish purposes.
Forget the fact that there are plenty of “people” who talk about Peyton Manning on a regular basis (look no further than my own earlier piece on the subject for proof), the simple reality that this “journalist” based a vitriol filled diatribe against an entire fanbase on the observation of one woman is trolling at its most depraved.
Astoundingly, that’s not even the most obnoxious thing in this brief quote. While claiming that a fanbase is fair-weather simply because they fail to pay the proper amount of deference (as determined by Mr. Baldwin himself) to a player no longer on the team, is patently absurd (not to mention untrue to begin with; apparently he hasn’t been following the ongoing saga of Broncos jerseys making appearances at Lucas Oil Stadium), calling Indianapolis a “nowhere hamlet on the map” in a sports context is the equivalent of claiming that the sinking of the Titanic was a minor boating accident.
Indianapolis is the home of the NCAA Hall of Fame, NCAA National Headquarters, quadrennial host of the NCAA Final Four, host of Super Bowl XLVI (and likely candidate for Super Bowl host rotation), home to the two time national runner-up Butler Bulldogs, home to the Indianapolis 500 (aka the greatest spectacle in sports), semi-annual host city of the Big Ten NCAA Basketball Tournament (both men’s and women’s), annual host of the NCAA Big Ten Football Championship, and of course home to the Indiana Pacers. I didn’t even include Indianapolis as a central fan hub for the #1 ranked Indiana Hoosiers basketball team, the #1 ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team, or the plethora of high school athletic tournaments Indiana is known for (the movie Hoosiers comes to mind). It’s no wonder the Toronto Star named Indianapolis the “best sports city in North America.” Good call Chris.
From there, feeling emboldened by his blatant inanity, and demonstrating the short attention span trolls are known for, Baldwin decides to totally shift directions and turn his hateful bile toward Luck himself (why he does this is anyone’s guess, trolls are not rational creatures), and demonstrate his complete lack of football knowledge in the process.
Never mind that Andrew Luck is mostly a game manager at the moment — way more than Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub, who often gets saddled with that label. Never mind that he hasn't shown close to the brilliance that Robert Griffin III has displayed while carrying a flawed Redskins team…
His intangibles are off the charts, Luck's defenders — and he has a media army of them that Tebow could never grab — will tell you. Which is a nice way of saying, Please don't look at the actual stats.
Instead, the Luck brigade will spin one that has little to do with the quarterback and a lot to do with real luck and a surprising defense: The Colts' 6-1 record in games decided by seven points or less.
If the rubbish up to this point wasn’t unpalatable enough, now we are asked to stomach the statement that Andrew Luck is a “game manager,” a term that, according to Wikipedia, is used to describe a “non-star quarterback on a winning team… [who] avoids making mistakes that prevent his team's defense and rushing offenses from succeeding.” In other words, a QB who doesn’t do much to help his team win but is careful with the football and allows his elite defense and running game to do the bulk of the work. Sound like Andrew Luck to you? Yeah, nice try troll.
I’ll just let the numbers speak for themselves. The Colts defense ranks 20th in total defense, 20th in rush defense, 28th in opponent passer rating, 22nd in points allowed, is 32nd in FO’s DVOA metric, oh, and did I mention is on pace to break the NFL record for fewest takeaways in a season (11 by the strike shortened 1982 Baltimore Colts; the 2012 Colts currently have 7; Houston has 20). The only thing “surprising” about the Colts defense is just how bad it is.
But how about that rushing game that Luck is protecting with his game management skills? The Colts run game ranks 17th in yards (Houston 5th), 22nd in yards per attempt (Houston 13th), 18th in rushing first down percentage (Houston 5th), well you get the idea.
So it’s obvious that Luck isn’t protecting his run game, and only a moron would suggest the Colts are winning because of their defense (oh wait…), so how then are they managing to win games? Why throwing the ball of course.
Indy ranks 7th in passing yards (1st in passing yards in the air, RGIII and Schaub are 20th and 10th respectively), 5th in pass attempts per game, 3rd in yards per completion (Schaub and his game managing is 13th), 3rd in deep ball percentage (Schaub is 23rd, RG III slightly worse at 31st out of 32), 16th in play action percentage (RGIII and Schaub are 1st and 3rd respectively, so who is relying on their run game again?), and 3rd in total QBR with RGIII 5th and Schaub 10th (not surprisingly Baldwin dismisses ESPN’s proprietary stat as “made up”).
I’d prefer not to get into a detailed comparison of Luck vs. RGIII, it’s been done already elsewhere, but claiming that Griffin is “carrying a flawed Redskins team” (as if the Colts weren’t flawed) that ranks 1st in rushing yards, 3rd in rushing yards per attempt, and 3rd in rushing play percentage, is insultingly dumb.
Luck is on pace to shatter the rookie record for pass attempts (590 by Sam Bradford) with a ridiculous 653 attempts (that’s nearly 41 a game), not to mention yards at 4,662 (4,051 by Cam Newton). When a QB is throwing 41 times a game it usually means they are consistently behind/losing. Not so with the Colts. They are winning with Luck throwing 40+ times behind an offensive line that ranks 25th in pass protection by Pro Football Focus. Game manager my ass.
I could further address statements like, “Luck's numbers do not seem so spectacular when stacked up next to Andrew Dalton's 2011 rookie season.” And, “Andrew Luck is still much more myth than reality at this point. He is a magazine cover boy propped up by others. To so completely disregard the memory of Peyton Manning for that is pretty classless and even more clueless.” But to do so would just be belaboring the point.
Nobody in Indianapolis is disregarding the memory of Peyton Manning, in fact it’s mind boggling, and more than a little ironic, just how “clueless” that statement is. Peyton Manning is an icon in this city and always will be, should we stop showing up for games at Lucas Oil or not cheer as loudly for Luck? That’s absurd, and what's worse, the miscreant who wrote it knows it is.
I’m comfortable laying this beast to rest in the shallow grave I just dug for him… here’s hoping his body isn’t unearthed and reanimated to troll again. On second thought, maybe I should dig the grave a little deeper.
Dang colts fans. For better than a decade all you hear was Peyton Manning. How can the whole fan base disrespect Jim Harbaugh like that? The fact you people love your Manning is proof that you are all fair weather fans!
Now, on a serious note, I've said it before and will say it again, Luck needs to become a game manager, just as Peyton did. The Manning of 2004 was NOT as good as the Manning of 2005 or even the Manning of today. The reason is simple, a QB with so much talent, who is so good and finds things so easy, doesn't need to try to manage a game to do well.
Luck on his bad days puts up numbers several teams wish they could get. I've seen him blasted for "yet another sub 300 yard game" as if he didn't already have tons of them! But he has no idea how to manage a game yet. Last week was actually a step in the right direction I think, since he never tried to force anything. Nothing came, but at least he didn't try to push it.
Peyton in 2004...remember that? He'd sit half the game after throwing 400 yards and 4 TD passes in the first half. The Colts could be up by 3 scores in the first quarter. The offense was a juggernaut of unrivaled proportions. I very much doubt I will ever live to see anything like that, in any sport. Defenses crumbled under the arm of 18.
That wasn't him at his best, though. Doing that, he put a lot of pressure on the defense, putting them on the field too much throughout the game and the season. The offense was predictable, which wasn't so bad 99% of the time, because it worked regardless, but RB's need to get into rhythm too, but it never happened. The receivers also had to run down the field a lot more, and back. Over the course of a season, that adds up to a lot of extra effort.
Only when he learned to be a game manager did he go from elite to all time great. The real great ones can turn it on when needed but simply manage the game when it isn't. Luck isn't a game manager, but I hope he becomes one.
I want that guy that's going to touch the ball on every play for the next 15 years to be a game manager. Gunslingers tend to get shot sometimes, no matter how good they are. Managers will protect their team, and good ones will be able to turn it on and still beat the Dolphins after a laughably one sided time of possession game.
Did I miss it or did you forget to mention that Luck is doing better as a rookie than Peyton did as a rookie? I mean, I know the situations aren't completely comparable, but it was obvious in '98 to anyone watching Peyton play that he was going to be great just as it is now with Luck.
Please don't take offense, but I did not read past the opening paragraph. Trolls are boring, reaction to them is therefore boring, and crossbows do not kill trolls - nothing kills trolls and the sickness that causes their desperate need for attention - ignoring them destroys their power which is the best outcome possible.
@CoverZero Lol, they do tend to reanimate. It's still fun to kill them, even if it ultimately accomplishes nothing. Notice I didn't actually link to the article in question here, didn't want to give him more traffic. I wrote this more for my own sanity than for anyone else, but if other people enjoyed it that was a bonus.
You never know, you might enjoy reading it.
You wasted your time picking apart that piece of shit. It already does it for itself. It would be better served in the Onion, but it's not well-written enough.
@7IHd You're probably right, but it was either write this or do actual work, so I figure it a win either way.
So where IS that shallow grave and where does the line start to urinate on it?
UNless he was trying to be funny... which he totally was. Alas, not intentionally.
@Bobman1 If the location was revealed it would make it that much easier for his troll friends Skip Bayless and Brad Wells to unearth his body and strengthen their ranks.
@Colt_Following Ugh, you soiled my eyes just by making me read their names! Glad to say I haven't given BW any thought in a few years since swearing off his website, and Brainless? Never. Now to work on forgetting their existence once more....
I wasn't aware that some asshole hack of a whatever-the-hell-you-want-to-call-that-guy-because-anything-that-would-conjure-the-idea-of-a-professional-is-not-fitting could actually put me in such a horrible mood. How does his feeble brain case even dare try to comprehend what Peyton meant and still means to us? Let alone question it! I still can't even think about the 2006 AFC Championship game without getting excited and even emotional. Since that game, I have gotten married to a wonderful woman, finished two B.A.'s and an M.A., and put on our Nation's Uniform AND I HONESTLY STILL THINK THAT IS THE HAPPIEST I HAVE EVER BEEN. And that is just one of literally hundreds of days in which myself and many of the most important people in my life were privileged enough to be brought together to share the experience of watching the greatness of Peyton Manning develop and excel into a whole new stratosphere.
But, this troll asserts that we just up and developed some sort of selective, ungrateful amnesia? Exactly how long would it be appropriate for me to spend my Sundays crying in the corner wearing nothing by my Manning jersey? Should I carry a cat o' nine tails with which to lash myself every time Andrew Luck makes a play that I enjoyed watching? Pray-tell, oh soulless one, when will it be socially acceptable for me to love again?
When Peyton Manning goes into the Hall (wouldn't it be awesome if he and Marvin got in the same year? sigh, a fella can dream.) I'll be in the crowd in Canton with my brothers and father talking about how Peyton put an insanely flawed Colts team on his back and carried it to the playoffs in 2008. This useless turd will probably be self-publishing his novel about a Houston-based journalist who struggles to comprehend why he is unloved by the world around him.
@Zachasaurus_Rex Well said. I would actually read that novel, if for no other reason than to get inside the mind of a self-delusional mad man.
As a resident of Houston, and one who follows the Houston sports scene closely, I would rather Houston not be associated with this guy, Chris Baldwin. As much hate as he has stirred up in Indy, please know that there's even more hate thrown his way by Houstonians...just take a look at most of his articles (mainly on the Texans, Astros, and Rockets) from the last few years. The comments sections are littered with Baldwin-bashing. The guy is a terrible "journalist" and most of his articles are written with the intent to garner negative comments..and thus more hits of the website.
Just know that your sentiments above are equally shared by people in Houston.
@guest Thanks for commenting and believe me, I totally understand. We have a "journalist" or two in the local Indianapolis market that I don't think many people would want to be associated with. They're more and more prevalent in this blogging age of the might page hit (I actually wrote an article about it last week if you check the archives; titled "The Football Philosopher"). I have a ton of respect for the Texans and have enjoyed seeing them rise to prominence as the Colts try to rebuild. You'll find no ill will here and you're welcome back any time, guest or no guest. People like Chris Baldwin need to be called out on their BS or we risk sports journalism becoming tabloid level drivel and sensationalism. I love sports communities and I hate to see d-bags like Baldwin crap all over it like it's a joke.
I feel terrible for bogarting you, particularly since this is far WAY BETTER STATED than my scattered & weird thoughts on the matter.
The troll will feed again, though, b/c trolls never die. :((
You get first crack at him next time, when he writes that Dale Davis never actually existed(?).
@royhobbson Haha, no problem. Yours was more fun to read, that's for sure. Great minds think alike. There are not enough words in the English language to be hurled in anger at this man. I consider our work here of the highest import.