Ah yes. The media game.
Player sends representative out to chat up the media in order to get his or her thoughts in the new cycle without the thoughts coming directly from said player. The news cycle churns the story, and the results are not quite what the player intended. Player then sends rep out again to 'clarify' the remarks, and the process repeats itself.
Such a process is now playing out with Archie Manning, media mouthpiece for his sons Peyton and Eli.
On a Tuesday phone interview with Dan Patrick, Archie began downplaying his earlier comments:
Manning clarified his remarks that Peyton and Andrew Luck likely couldn’t co-exist in Indianapolis. Here’s why: "Andrew Luck doesn’t look like the kind of quarterback who’s going to sit."
Dan asked Manning what he would do if he ran the Colts. "You gotta see where Peyton is health-wise," Archie said. "Hopefully that will clear up in one month, two months, three months."
Yesterday, Archie did a complete about face when speaking with ESPN.com.
"I’m sure they could [coexist]," Archie Manning said in a Wednesday phone interview, via ESPN.com. "Andrew is a great young man and we’ve enjoyed getting to know him. He and Peyton have a friendship, and I’m one of the few people out there that’s not really concerned about this deal. All good people respect each other and I’m sure this will all shake out."
So, yeah. Looks like Archie might have gotten the 'WTF ARE YOU SAYING TO THE MEDIA, DAD!' treatment from his second eldest son. As Mike Florio noted, Archie now seems like a guy who was told to zip it.
Archie knows what Peyton wants. If Peyton is telling Archie that Peyton’s current rehab efforts amount to "sissy work," Peyton surely is telling Archie what Peyton wants to do when Peyton is cleared to do more manly things.
Generally, Archie sounded like a guy who had been told by Peyton to zip it, at least for now. Still, given that Archie and Oliver Luck talked by phone the night before Archie expressed doubt that their two sons want to be on the same team, a plan surely exists. While it all may be contingent on Peyton being healthy enough to play, there’s a plan. And Archie gave us all a sneak peek of it on Tuesday.
All this is part of the behind-the-scenes-tug-o-war between Peyton and the Polians, a war that will only escalate if and when the Colts clinch the No. 1 overall pick.
I hate to use this phrase because it conjures up images of Terrell Owens and Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders, but 'get your popcorn ready.' The Colts play on the gridiron this year might be a fright fest, but the backroom brawling that is happening between Peyton and the Polians is certainly entertaining.