What your view of sports and life would be if you had too many concussions
As you can see from my by-line, the “I” in “JFI” stands for Indiana. That’s where I live, which means I get all the local coverage. You may remember awhile back there was a piece here on Dubsism about the worst fans in the NFL. In that post, the Indianapolis Colts won a poll determining who are the NFL’s worst fans. But I’ve come to the conclusion that not only are Colts fans the worst, they are also the dumbest.
Yes, I know all fan bases have good fans, all fan bases have band-wagon riders, and all fan bases have morons. Being a Patriots fan, I am fully aware of that. But Colts fans really take the cake when it comes to being completely ignorant about football.
First of all, I always raise my eyebrows when I hear someone say they are a “die hard” Colts fan or that they “bleed Colts blue.” This is especially entertaining when such statements are coming our of the mouth of somebody wearing a Denver Broncos Peyton Manning jersey walking around. A great way to get blank stares out of these people is to ask them to name a Colts quarterback before before Peyton Manning. They never heard of guys like Jim Harbaugh, Jeff George, or Jack Trudeau. A lot of people may not remember those guys, but people who cal them selves “die hard” fans ALWAYS remember quarterbacks, especially the terrible ones.
I know that because I’m a “die hard” Patriots fan. That means I remember what the Patriots were before Tom Brady and Bill Belichick. I spent a ton of Sundays watching a veritable “Who’s Who” of shitty quarterbacks. Tony Eason, Scott Zolak, Hugh Millen, Tommy Hodson, Marc Wilson, Tom Ramsey…need I continue?
The reason Colts fans can’t do that is because they really are just Peyton Manning fans. They didn’t watch the Colts before him, and they only watch the NFL now so they can touch themselves to Papa John’s commericals or whatever else Manning is hawking these days. A “die hard” fan know the lousy quarterbacks as well as the great ones, because as much as you love the great ones, you curse the crappy ones. That’s why EVERY “die hard” Colts fan over the age of 40 should easily remember names like Mark Herrmann, Mark Vlasic, and Gary Hogeboom.
Age 40 is an important cut-off for Colts fans. I remember how everyone around here was a Bears fan before 1984 when the Colts moved to Indianapolis. Now, I can understand switching sides when your hometown gets a new team, but that isn’t what happened. The “life-long Colts fans” didn’t give a damn about that team until they started winning. Before the Colts got good, it used to easy for me to go down to the RCA Dome and buy tickets on game day to see the Patriots. In those days the Patriots were just about as bad as the Colts, so those were some epic battles of ineptitude, but I’m a Patriots fan, and that’s what fans do. You watch your team even when they suck.
That is, of course, unless your a “life long Colts fan.” Once Peyton Manning hit town, the Colts band-wagon filled up faster than Hilary Clinton’s deleted email folder. Nothing draws out the band-wagon crowd faster than winning; trust me, I’m also a Chicago Cubs fan, so I’ve that to deal with now as well. The real problem with the band-wagon crowd is you also get a ship-load of people who have no loyalty and know absolutely nothing about the sport. And before you say it, I know that happens in all fan bases of winning teams…ask a Red Sox fan about that. But you get a disproportionately high number of them among Colts fans.
There’s a distinct reason for that. Go back to my “line in the sand” about the age of a Colts fan. If you’re under the age of 40, you likely don’t remember the Baltimore Colts, also known as the team late owner Robert Irsay moved here in the middle of the night. That means you have no idea about how the only reason you have a hometown team is because a drunken asswipe dicked over an entire city with an enormously loyal fan base. That’s why if you’re a Colts fan over the age of 40, you have absolutely no excuse not to know the history of your team. The Baltimore Colts Marching Band lived on for years with no team until they were ultimately adopted by the Ravens when they moved to Baltimore.
Keeping a marching band together even after the team left you like a cheap one-night stand…that’s being a “die hard” fan. Buying a Denver Bronco Peyton Manning jersey before his change of address cards even cleared the Post Office…that’s being a band-wagoner. There were people in Baltimore who lived and breathed the Colts. In Indiana, you’ll change jerseys faster than changing your socks.
But the kicker in all of this is how even the lamest, least loyal Colts fan is still hanging on to that “Deflate-gate” nonsense.
You can dismiss this as my being a Patriots fan, but that’s just a cop-out so you don’t have to deal with some harsh realities. That’s easy to see if you start with the false assumption held by Colts fans that Indianapolis would have won that AFC Championship Game had it not been for the Patriots alleged “cheating.” Never mind that Chris Mortenson’s report that started all this mess was at best “flawed.” Never mind that the alleged “cheating supposedly took place in the second half. Those are just the pillars holding up the facade hiding the fact that your team gagged when it mattered.
The score was 17-7 at halftime. Realistically, the Colts had already lost at that point. Had the Colts offense been in a horse race, they would have been glue by the middle of the third quarter. But you really didn’t have to wait that long to see the Colts weren’t winning that day.
For starters, the fumbled snap on the punt in the opening quarter which led to the first of LeGarrette Blount’s three rushing touchdowns. Funny how nobody wonders what the pressure in those balls was? The reason is it wouldn’t have mattered, because that game was over in the 3rd quarter when Andrew Luck tossed that pick to Darrelle Revis, which set up Blount’s second touchdown. The fact is the Colts couldn’t have kept Blount out of the end zone if Donald Trump himself built them a goal-line wall.
The final nail in the coffin is also the one Colts fans love to overlook, since it completely screws their assertion. The Patriots out-scored the Colts 21-0 in the second half after the deflated balls were noticed and corrected. “Deflate-gate” lives so Colts fans never have to admit they lost because they had the bad combination of not being able to score with a complete inability to stop anybody.
The bottom line is the Colts fans who are going to be pissed off about my questioning their loyalty are the same ones who watched the “Deflate-gate” game in their Denver Bronco Peyton Manning jersey, and the ones who will get pissed for me calling them stupid are the same ones who cling to a lie so they don’t have to admit their team is historically just not quite good enough.
How dumb is that?
Agree? Disagree? Got a hot take of your own on this topic? Hit up the Comments section of send it straight to JFI at @jbhickleon Twitter or email email@example.com.