On Thursday night, Peyton Manning got the season started with a seven-touchdown performance. On Sunday night, Eli Manning wraps the day in Dallas, where he has never lost in four prior tries.
Next week, the brothers get together for the third time in their respective NFL careers. It’s Denver at New York, which but for the involvement of the two quarterbacks would be known only as a rematch of Super Bowl XXI.
“We don’t like it,” Archie Manning tells Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times. “[Peyton and Eli] don’t like it. But, hey, you’ve kind of got to look at it as kind of an honor and how blessed we are to have two sons playing quarterback in the NFL. It’s happened twice, and this may be the last time.
“I look at it as, we don’t get worked up about it, but it’s all part of the journey. That’s kind of my philosophy is, enjoy the journey.”
The third Manning brother, Cooper, doesn’t enjoy the journey.
“I went to the first one and there made the decision I would never go back,” Cooper told Farmer. “I don’t want to be cheering when Peyton throws a touchdown, and there’s Eli’s wife looking at me like, ‘What the heck are you doing cheering for that?'”
While Archie is right when he says this could be the final Manning Bowl, the ultimate showdown could happen in any given year.
This year, the rematch could happen in the same stadium where they will be playing next Sunday.
While Archie may enjoy the journey that would lead his two sons to Super Bowl XLVIII, he’d likely have a hard time enjoying the game itself. And it would be the second straight year that a football family would be facing that specific dilemma.