I am amazed how great Denver is when they play "Manning Ball".
I am a Colts fan who has seen nearly every Manning game live in Indy. One thing I know is that the type of game the Colts played was because of Peyton. When Manning came to Denver he brought his game with him. He did not bring "Colts ball" because we WAS Colts ball.
Fox/McCoy are still trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. Every first half is an attempt to create a hybrid of Denver style and what they believe is "Colts" style playing. Listen, the Colts have completely changed their game. The defense has switched to 4/3 with Freeney as a line backer. Why? Manning is gone! And he took his game with him.
Dungy and Moore always let Manning run the offense. Moore once said that Peyton new more about the game that most coaches and he played to that strength. I heard the talk in Indy when Caldwell was made head coach. It was because they wanted a man who would leave Manning alone to run his offense. It led a Caldwell coached team to a Superbowl! You saw what happened once Peyton was sidelined.
The most telling thing I ever heard was a local interview with Kerry Collins after he was hired to replace Peyton last season. After playing for so many different teams they asked Collins if training as a Colts QB was any different. He said it was unlike anything he had ever experienced. He said that, unlike other teams, the Colts offense was based less on game planning and more on one mans mind-Peyton's!
Collins was given a stream lined play book that the OC would feed to him on the field. Kerry said he never did learn Peyton's offense because that entire Offense was between Manning's ears.
Reggie Wayne use to complain how Peyton would call plays they maybe had only run once five years before. He was the only one who could remember every play he has ever run - the man is a computer.
Sorry for the rant. My point is this. I do not think Fox and Co. fully realize what their money has purchased. Denver bought Mannings Mind! That mind IS the game you saw in Indy. It is not Colts property, it now belongs to Denver. It is not copying the Colts offense, it is using the very thing Denver paid for.
I am amazed at how all the pieces are in place for the Broncos. In Indy you needed a defense with a great pass rush, average line backers and a respectable secondary. Manning would get you in a position to exploit the Freeney/Mathis duo. In Denver you have a much better defense. An equally talented pass rushing duo, average line backers and a much better secondary.
I have watched every Denver game this year and I keep seeing Fox and McCoy squander the first half trying to impose THEIR game on arguably the smartest man in football. Then when it doesn't work and they fall behind, they turn to Manning led football to bail them out.
I hope after this stunning comeback, (by the whole team I might add), that they wake up and realize that this is not just a HOF QB but one of the greatest play callers in the history of the game.
It's time for 60 minutes of MANNING BALL!