Former Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning hosted the ESPYs and he made jokes at both the expense of himself and of others. Manning has always been one of the more comedic NFL players, including his iconic SNL skits that involve beaning kids with footballs (although I actually think Eli Manning is funny, too).
At the ESPYs, Manning and his once-rival New England Patriots had a little back-and-forth, with one great sketch of Manning watching the Patriots face the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI.
Manning says that he doesn’t have a rooting interest in this game before unzipping his sweatshirt to show an Atlanta Falcons t-shirt. He goes on to count out Touchdown Tom, before threatening to change the channel and unplug the television during the game. Watch it now because it’s great.
There’s a second sketch featuring Patriots quarterback Tom Brady as Manning enjoys the retired life.
Tom is speaking with “Gam Gam” on the computer with Peyton walking in on the conversation. Brady tells his grandmother than he “used to play football with Peyton.” Grandma then looks at Peyton and exclaims, “Oh, isn’t that wonderful! Did you win five Super Bowls, too?”
“Shut up, Ruth!” Peyton spits back before leaving the room to jump on a scooter with a bunch of other retirees.
Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman also took to the stage to take a dig of his own at Manning.
“You know I never really thought I’d say this, but Peyton Manning’s kind of killing it,” Edelman acknowledged before throwing in a barb: “Yeah, we are indoors, though.”
Peyton benefit for most of his career by playing inside a dome, averaging 99.1 passer rating in his 130 games inside of a dome, versus 94.0 passer rating outside. For comparison, Brady averages a 105.1 passer rating in his mere 20 games inside, versus a 96.6 passer rating outside.
Manning is clearly loving the retired life and has a good sense of humor. His retirement might be short lived as he has been linked to multiple NFL front offices that are hoping he can bring a John Elway-esque touch to their franchise, while broadcast networks are hoping to add him to their booth or pregame show.