I had an affair on Sunday.
I'll fully admit, I enjoyed it thoroughly, even if I felt a bit dirty afterward.
I cheated on my beloved New England Patriots and rooted for their arch rivals, the Indianapolis Colts. And it was fun. Of course, there were extenuating circumstances which led me down this path and seduced me, but I take full responsibility for my actions, and I'm here to 'fess up, and say that it won't happen again next weekend.
But it was fun while it lasted. There was no way I was ever going to root for the New York Jets. Their swagger and cockiness were just too much for a team without much on their resume. Sneaking into the playoffs and then beating perennial postseason powerhouses Cincinnati and San Diego do not deserve nationwide media worship and adulation. Add that to all the transgressions the Jets have committed off the field against the Patriots - starting the Spygate episode, Mangini, Parcells, tampering with Deion Branch, signing Curtis Martin to a "poison pill" deal - and many more smaller incidents over the years.
The Colts? Beyond the eternally insufferable Bill Polian and the annoying calls by the national media to waive the waiting period to Sainthood for former coach Tony Dungy, they've just been a great football team. One that in recent years, more often than not, has had their way with the Patriots. I've got nothing but respect for their players, especially for Peyton Manning. Unlike some, I'm not worried that the Colts going to another Super Bowl is going to somehow take away from what the Patriots have accomplished over the last 10 years or so. What the Patriots have done cannot be taken away from them.
So it was the Colts that I got into bed with that day, and I have to say, it felt nice. Even when the Jets made some noise early, getting to Manning, hitting a couple long passes, and getting out to a 17-6 lead, I wasn't worried at all. I knew that Manning and the Colts would make the necessary in-game adjustments to what the Jets were doing, and would eventually knock them out. I can't tell you how much I've missed that feeling in watching a team I was rooting for.
When the inevitable happened, and Manning started picking apart the Jets secondary at will, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I admired the ability of the offensive line to hold up against the Jets rush just long enough so Manning could get the throw off, I loved seeing the sinking faces of Rex Ryan and the Jets on the sideline as they realized that they couldn't stop what the Colts were doing. I loved the supposedly porous Colts defense holding the vaunted Jets running attack to 86 total yards on the afternoon.
I started to detach myself as the fourth quarter neared the end. The realization of what I had done began to sink in. I was feeling guilty about enjoying this powerful display of football, and envious of what I once had in the Patriots.
I want it back.
Bruce Allen is the creator of Boston Sports Media Watch,
which has recently been recognized by SI.com as one of the best non-corporate
sports web site's on the Internet