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article imageOp-Ed: NFL — Collins needs reps as Manning needs to rest

By Austin Tyler     Sep 4, 2011 in Sports
Indianapolis - With the NFL season almost here, the Indianapolis Colts have a tough decision to make on who gets the majority of the practice time in Indy. With Peyton struggling with an injury and question of his readiness, the Colts signed Kerry Collins to step in.
The Indianapolis Colts are dealing with a dilemma that was beyond unexpected. The lockout was one thing, but the surgery on their most prized athlete Peyton Manning was another. Manning had neck surgery in the off-season, and was expected to get more rest than usual if the season did not start on time. Well it was pushed back a little, but the problem is he is still not ready.
Seeing Manning is not ready, the Colts took it upon themselves to look for a strong dependable veteran with leadership ability. This was due to their backups not being able to get it done in the early preseason games. That veteran is Kerry Collins who in most cases is really “Mr. Dependable”. Collins has had his fair share of problems, but has won more than his fair share of games with a 79-85 record as a starting quarterback.
The situation did not go over well from the jump with wide receiver Reggie Wayne who had this to say about the addition of Collins to the team, and being expected to start.
We don't even know him, we ain't vanilla, man, we ain't no simple offense. So for him to can come in here and be the starter, I don't see it. I think that's a step back.
Well Collins knows how to play quarterback and learning offenses is nothing new to him as he has played for five different teams in the Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, Oakland Raiders, and the Tennessee Titans before retiring this past year. Collins was drafted by the Panthers in 1995 expansion draft out of Penn State, and the first player ever drafted by the organization. In his second season he led the Panthers to the NFC Championship, so that lets you know he knows how to win. Collins then with the Giants took over the starting job and led them to Super Bowl XXXV, where they lost to the Baltimore Ravens, so that shows he can get to big games.
Collins did not have much success in Oakland, but with that organization who really does? Collins next step was to Tennessee where he took over for a troubled Vince Young. Collins did well with the Titans as he was even named to the 2009 Pro Bowl as an alternate. Collins took a shot when they got smashed by the New England Patriots 59-0, sending them a 0-6 start. Collins then lost his starting job, handing it back over to Young.
We all know Manning’s resume and what he has done for the Colts organization, but with Manning recently signing a $90 million dollar contract, the Colts are hoping he can return soon than expected. Manning is cleared to practice, but in the mist of all this he is not ready to play in a game. Manning did not play in a single preseason game let alone even put pads on. Manning has not had contact since the surgery, and who knows how the hit will affect the healing process. This is a very tender situation for Colts as they don’t want to fall to far behind if Peyton can’t start, but don’t want to take the chance of him getting re-injured either while bringing him back too soon.
This is why Collins should get most of the reps for the Colts as of right now. The Colts are not going to hit Peyton in practice, and with the money they have invested in him, why even take that chance. You can take the chance of ending his career if you bring him back to soon, and then you’re stuck paying a guy who is not
playing. Collins has been known to hold a ship together through tough times till he is relieved of his duties.
Are you telling me that you cannot go three to four weeks as the most without Manning at the helm? Do you really think that Collins cannot manage to win games against the likes of the Houston Texans (Week 1), Cleveland Browns (Week 2), and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Week 4)? The only problem in the first four week of their schedule is the Pittsburg Steelers in Week 3.
If I were in the Colts shoes I would do what is best for the organization, and that is protect my best asset, Peyton Manning. Take the time to allow him to heal and get comfortable. Manning is a warrior and a winner, and he is not going to jump back in it if he is not ready. Give him his back-up reps with the first offense, but in the end Kerry Collins should handle the majority of the reps as he is fit to lead in a substitute situation.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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