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Horse Tracks: Peyton Manning's deflategate sidestep two-step

With all the deflategate hubbub this week, one interesting thing sticks out: Why haven't other NFL quarterbacks weighed in on the controversy? Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning was asked about it on a recent trip to Indianapolis. What he said left much to be desired.

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

I'll be honest, folks, the New England reaction to deflate-gate has been kind of gross. Early last week Tom Brady's agent spit plenty of venom and claimed that there was an NFL sponsored sting operation to bring Brady down. There were claims that the Ravens and Colts had it in for the Pats, claims that the investigation wasn't thorough enough (even though Brady refused to exonerate himself by participating), and claims that the independent investigation wasn't 'independent' enough since the NFL paid to have it conducted (you know, because if it were truly independent the NBA, UFC, or AARP would have done it). .

When Josh McDaniels imported the Pats special brand of cheating, videotaping of opposing team practices, to the Broncos during his tire-fire-run as head coach, Denver fans screamed from the rooftops that this sort of cheating couldn't be tolerated. Okay, maybe the response was more measured... but we were disappointed. Especially since McDaniels had a copy of the Rams walk-through and still couldn't win.

Here's MHR's reaction to the news of the fines.

What's missing from the deflate-gate scandal, at least from where I stand, is anyone out there owning up to the fact that Brady was at least generally aware that there was something nefarious going on with the balls, that a rule was being intentionally broken, that they were cheating... again. Where is the integrity?

So what does Peyton Manning think? Did he seize upon the opportunity to disparage contravening the rules? He was asked three times during a recent trip to Indianapolis and this is what he had to say:

"Like I said, I'll speak it as clearly and slowly as I can. He's my friend, he'll always be my friend," Manning told reporters before a fundraiser for the Indianapolis children's hospital named in his honor. "I don't know what happened, I don't have much more than that for you."

Come on, Peyton. They're not asking you to pile on the guy. They, like the rest of us, want to know what you think about the rules violation and the fact that it's now been traced back to Tom Brady. I'm not mad that he didn't say anything, I'm just disappointed. When the most influential folks in the game have nothing to say regarding (like it or not, blame the offseason) the biggest story of today it's (dare I say...) deflating. To have no opinion on fair play just doesn't sit right. Where is Peyton and, frankly, where are the rest of the NFL's quarterbacks on all this? To read more on Manning's sidestep two-step, click here.

Horse Tracks

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