Many people are fans of the Indianapolis Colts. But many, many more people are NOT fans of the Indianapolis Colts. This Deadspin 2009 NFL team preview is for those in the latter group.
1. When everyone says the team won't miss a beat without Tony Dungy, that practically ensures the opposite will occur. The Colts face the 2009 season without the quiet strength and NO FAG HAGS policy of former head coach Tony Dungy. In addition, offensive coordinator Tom Moore and offensive line coach Howard Mudd both retired due to pension issues (though the Colts rehired both men as consultants and plan on having each continue performing their old jobs in some sort of unofficial capacity). Virtually every article written about the team this offseason has implied that the transition to new head coach Jim Caldwell will be utterly seamless. He's been around the team forever! Peyton does all the coaching anyway! Caldwell's just like Dungy, only darker! Most people won't even know the coach is some other dude now! I've seen any number of supposedly foolproof coaching handoffs in NFL history go awry to believe that shit. COUGH!richiepetitbonCOUGH! This all but guarantees that Caldwell will be a flaming shitwreck.
2. Marvin Harrison is no longer around to secretly threaten the other team with gun violence. One would assume MarHar will be picked up by some team at some point before Week 1. Then again, perhaps teams are purposely avoiding Harrison because they know that, when the night falls, he becomes Messy Marvin, Philly crime lord par excellence. It makes you wonder if Harrison's quiet intimidation of NFL defenses in the past was the result of actual physical intimidation, and not graceful route running, as so widely assumed.
3. It's never a good sign when your toughest player is a safety who misses ten games a year. Bob Sanders skipped the team's OTA's this spring due to "the physical demands of the 2008 season," according to the Indianapolis Star. That physically demanding season included appearing in just six games. Pfft. What a pussy.
4. DALLAS FUCKING CLARK. It's not that Clark sucks, of course. It's that he's just so terribly annoying. As I and others have pointed out, he's always around to bail out Peyton Manning right when the Colts seem dead in the water. So fucking aggravating. Hey Clark, why don't you go stick a Freeze Pop up your dick?
5. Remember, the Colts are always a Manning injury away from 5-11. Don't think it can happen, Colts fans? Well, that's just what Patriot fans thought about their supposedly durable little hero last year. It can happen. And, given that everyone seems to think it'll be another 12-win, business-as-usual year for Indy, it probably will. "CUT THAT MEAT!" isn't as funny when Peyton has to say it to Dr. James Andrews.