Sports

Peyton’s new role: Nostradumbass

There’s always time to tank, but the Raiders are on track to beat Peyton Manning’s 6-11 prediction.

There’s always time to tank, but the Raiders are on track to beat Peyton Manning’s 6-11 prediction.
Illustration: Getty Images

ESPN’s Monday Night Football MegaCast debuted last night during the Baltimore Ravens and Las Vegas Raiders season opener — but Peyton Manning had thoughts about the Silver and Black’s entire season off just their first play. Turns out the rest of the game didn’t quite bear them out.

The broadcast featured the satirical stylings of Peyton and Eli Manning. Last night’s audience immediately got a taste of the type of commentary they’re in for from the sibling duo.

As Raiders quarterback Derek Carr took the first snap of the game, Peyton explained how this first play would tell him everything he needs to know about what the Raiders 2021 season will be like. With a smile on his face as Carr’s pass falls incomplete, Eli asks his big brother, “What does that tell you?”

Though Peyton’s “6-11” response is hilarious, looking back at it now, it seems premature. But let’s not forget Peyton did spend his last four years in the NFL as quarterback of the Denver Broncos. Everyone knows about that division rivalry, so I largely attribute Manning’s snarky opening line to that.

Many times during this game, Las Vegas seemed to be on the verge of making Peyton’s early call look like a genius prognostication. Offensively the Raiders were inconsistent, and at one point, Carr missed on seven straight pass attempts. Some of Carr’s misses in this game weren’t even close to being on target. To put a finer point on it, some of Carr’s passes forced you to scratch your head like, “What the hell was he thinking there?!”

But Carr’s most mind-boggling dropback may have been the pass he didn’t make. Running wide open down the seam, late in this close game, was TE Darren Waller. There wasn’t a Raven within 10 yards of Waller in any direction on this play.

Luckily for Carr and the Raiders, the Ravens didn’t seem to want to win anyway. So the Raiders walked away the victors, 33-27, in what turned out to be an overtime thriller. I’m sure Peyton’s prediction for the Raiders will be rehashed when Las Vegas returns to Monday Night Football on October 4 in Los Angeles against the Chargers.

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