I know how you feel, Peyton. This season's killing me, too. Do you need a hug?
You know I have more fondness for the number six than the average joe. You'd naturally think that two sixes snuggled up right next to each other would make me pretty happy. Maybe so when it's my Mr. Six snuggled up next to me, but when it's a 6 next to a 6 next to my beloved Indianapolis Colts? Not happy.
Yes, as of today we are 6-6. Six wins, six losses. Three losses in a row. My favorite local sports writer called tonight's match up against the Tennessee Titans a "must win," a situation we usually save for a playoff game, not game 13 of the regular season.
I'm used to spending a lot of the games standing up, alternating between pacing, yelling and cheering. I'm not so used to sitting down at the end of the game, dejected and wondering what the h-e-double hockey sticks just happened. It used to be that the Colts would be down a few points, but I wouldn't panic. "Just wait until Peyton gets the ball back", I'd think. Now when Peyton gets the ball I'm thinking, "Dear God, please throw it to the right team." Last year we were talking about a perfect record. This year it's been a perfectly depressing record, with a heaping side of season-ending injuries.
I think all of us fans are a bit jittery right now. We don't know quite what to do with ourselves in this situation. Maybe a Pacers fan can fill me in.
I can tell you what I won't do, though, and that is give up on my boys in blue. It's always been said the Colts are a fourth quarter team. Maybe this year they're saving it all up for the last quarter of the season. And if we lose tonight, and for the first time in 9 years we don't make it to the post-season? Yeah, I'll be really, really bummed. I'll probably be downright cranky during the first week of the playoffs. But I won't be a fair-weather fan.
Peyton could stink up Lucas Oil Stadium for the remainder of his career (please don't, though), and he'd still be my favorite quarterback. Even if we never see another Super Bowl appearance or AFC Championship banner, the Colts are my team. I'm a Hoosier and I root for the Colts. I rooted for them when they stunk before (hello, Jeff George?), I rooted for them in Nashville among a sea of Titans fans, and I'll root for them until I die.
All the same, it sure would be nice to let the 6 in the front of the 6-6 couple move on, and replace him with a perfectly nice 7. That's a number I could snuggle with right about now.