Ridiculous. Dumb. Idiotic.
Kravitz makes the point that the NFL Players Association should want to promote the fact that my guys want to play football and are willing to work out — even without injury insurance — in order to prepare for the season. You want the fans’ hearts and minds? Make these workouts accessible, to the fans or at least to the media, so we can see the players’ level of commitment despite the lockout. If the Organization Formerly Known As The NFLPA was smart, it would insist that players open their informal workouts. This is a time to be building bridges to the fans, not blowing them up.
Kravits doesn’t blame Bob Irsay or Bill Polian for this. He says the ultra-secrecy has No.18 “written all over it”. The Colts won’t even tell the media or the fans where the workouts are taking place. It got so ridiculous that last week, reporters from WTHR-13 went to St. Vincent Sports Performance, where several players are doing off-field workouts, to shoot a story on New England receiver Deion Branch. (Apparently, Manning can’t force opposing players to abide by the gag order.) After filming, Dallas Clark and Justin Snow complained to the St. Vincent folks how they didn’t want a shooter in their midst during a workout.
Meanwhile there are players on teams all over the league that are being fairly open about their workouts. ELI Manning led a small group of players at a public site in Hoboken, New Jersey. Drew Brees used day of informal New Orleans Saints workouts to sell raffle tickets for fans to win a day with the team.
It’s not an absolute fact that Peyton Manning is the person behind the secret workouts but it definitely fits his modus operandi. The local media virtually had to file a Freedom of Information Act request just to learn that Manning and his wife recently became the parents of twins.
But Manning becomes a lot more visible when he shows up on our tvs every other hour either hawking a product or boosting a charity. Kravitz makes the point that you lose some of your anonymity when you are constantly making commercials that play on your “just folks” persona. An he is lucky to live in a media town that affords him and his family a large degree of privacy.
So where the heck are the workouts, Peyton?