Irsay takes aim at Mortensen, Mort responds, and the fun continues

Someone needs to take away Jim Irsay’s keys to Twitter.

It’s a statement that could have been made multiple times since Irsay opened his account. It’s never been more appropriate than today, which has featured several volleys and deflections regarding the firestorm he created via comments indicating that he moved on from Peyton Manning in part because Irsay wanted championships, not statistics.

Irsay continued his Twitter tirade on Wednesday, taking aim at ESPN’s Chris Mortensen.

“Chris Mortensen, I don’t recall you being on that flight from Miami to Indy when Peyton said ‘You can’t pass on Luck’ I accept your apology,” Irsay said. “As far as your irresponsibility, that’s disappointing because your assumption that you were privy to all of Peyton and my conversations.  Irresponsible [and] misleading[.] Come on . . you’re better than that, Chris.”

In response, Mort pointed out that the conversation occurred on the flight preceding the press conference announcing Peyton’s release, after Irsay had made up his mind to move on from Manning.

And regardless of what Manning said to Irsay about drafting Andrew Luck with the first pick in the 2012 draft either on their last flight together or prior to that, Irsay said what he said to Jarrett Bell of USA Today.

“We’ve changed our model a little bit, because we wanted more than one of these,” Irsay said, referring to his Super Bowl XLI ring.  “[Tom] Brady never had consistent numbers, but he has three of these.  Pittsburgh had two, the Giants had two, Baltimore had two and we had one. That leaves you frustrated.

“You make the playoffs 11 times, and you’re out in the first round seven out of 11 times. You love to have the Star Wars numbers from Peyton and Marvin [Harrison] and Reggie [Wayne]. Mostly, you love this.”

While a surprising number of folks in the media have argued either that the comments were taken out of context (which continues to be the most misapplied excuse for someone saying something they shouldn’t have said) or that Irsay was merely telling the truth (which he quite possibly was), the point remains that Irsay should have said nothing that reasonably or unreasonably could have been construed as a diss of Peyton Manning in the days preceding the on-field reunion.

Unless, of course, former Colts coach Tony Dungy’s assessment is accurate regarding Irsay’s possible desire to get Peyton so keyed up for the game that he performs like he did in those seven one-and-done playoff losses.

Albert Breer of NFL Network (who has joined in the “out of context” chorus and otherwise defended Irsay) has — coincidentally or not — gotten ongoing access to the Colts owner throughout the controversy.  Most recently, Breer reports that Irsay has tried to call Peyton Manning, but that Irsay has yet to hear back from Peyton.

We predict that Irsay will hear from Peyton continuously between the hours of 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.

55 responses to “Irsay takes aim at Mortensen, Mort responds, and the fun continues

  1. In the end what Irsay said is factual. Everyone knows that Peyton inflates his numbers. He will go down as having more TD passes than anyone, but will also have more 1 yard TDs than anyone by a huge margin.

    It’s common knowledge that Peyton has a losing playoff record. Somebody is getting played. Will this game be too big for Peyton? Will it turnout to be a quasi-playoff game? Irsay hopes so.

  2. I think Isray is the burnt jealous ex-gf, and I think it has less to do with the divorce or anything preceding this up to when he had signed Peyton to a record blank check with full signoff by coach Caldwell and the GM that he was in great shape and worth every penny, 2nd Decade of Manning.

    Don’t forget those two guys were shelled too.

    I’d be pissed and pretty deceived that Manning being in his condition signing off on that knowing out he might be out for extended period of time.

    How easy is that to get over to the guy who treated like his own son.

    Not excusing Isray, he’s a certified idiot… just saying where this is coming from and why he can’t let go.

  3. Just saw a photo from the press conference with Irsay here in Indy today and the guy looks like he I aging in Presidents years. You need to do a side by side photo on this Florio.

  4. Another classy move by Irsay to leak info regarding the “he hasn’t returned my call” empty gesture.

    How in the world can the Colts “honor” Peyton with a tribute anyway? Why even call more attention to a career your own owner views as a disappointment?

    Furthermore why are they honoring him in the first place? Dudes not retired and he’s coming back to town to try and beat you.

    Such an awkward situation.

  5. Jim Irsay has nothing to complain about whatsoever. His team sandwiched one bad year between two franchise/HOF caliber QB’s. There are plenty of franchises if not all that would kill to be as lucky as that.

  6. “We’ve changed our model a little bit, because we wanted more than one of these,” Irsay said, referring to his Super Bowl XLI ring. “[Tom] Brady never had consistent numbers, but he has three of these. Pittsburgh had two, the Giants had two, Baltimore had two and we had one. That leaves you frustrated.

    “You make the playoffs 11 times, and you’re out in the first round seven out of 11 times. You love to have the Star Wars numbers from Peyton and Marvin [Harrison] and Reggie [Wayne]. Mostly, you love this.”

    I hate to say it, but if you read this and take Irsay at his word that he was knocking himself and the Colts organization, these coments do make sense in that context.

    They moved on from Peyton, got a new GM with a new philosophy who is aggressive in building both offensive line, defense, run game, head coach, special teams etc… He’s aggressive in free agency and trades and is always looking for ways to get better. While Polian would smugly “build through the draft” which was a terrible strategy considering how horrible his track record was over the last 5 years he was there.

    Irsay saw the shortcomings of that stragegy and his point was that in his opinion “lesser” QB’s were winning superbowls because they were surrounded with more well rounded teams… which is what he’s trying to put around Luck.

    I’m torn because I think Irsay is a joke, but I actually am leaning towards his side of the story on this one.

  7. Irsay is a loose cannon who rarely chooses his words carefully. If you need others to interpret your statements, you’ve done a poor job communicating. He should have known better where Peyton is concerned. His apologists are totally missing the point that Irsay has every reason to feel confident about his decision to move on from Peyton without saying anything that sounds disparaging of a player who will always be tied to the franchise and put that ring on his finger.

  8. He shouldn’t have said it. But there’s no reason for Peyton to take it as an insult. The people that he was insulting were the Colts defense. He basically said they were all offense, and you need to be balanced on both sides of the ball to win it all.

  9. Now I could be wrong about this, but I think even a lot of Manning haters would like to see him rub Irsay’s nose in it for all this garbage this week.

  10. Irsay is like a teenager he/said she/said worse done the students i used to teach. On another note by 10.00, P.M would have put him out of his misery.

  11. You know what other team consistently made the playoffs every year until the owners decided they needed a change to get over the hump and then they won the Superbowl the very next year with a new Coach and the same personnel? Tampa Bay Buccaneers, coached by Tony Dungy.

  12. If I was a Colts fan, Irsay would embarrass me. These are just pathetic attempts to have the media talk even more about the Indy-Denver game than they already will. As a true football fan, I’m excited for the actual football game without Jim’s “stirring” comments or the rest of the media chasing a mid week story. Last time I’ll be posting on one of the assuredly hundred more stories involving Jim Irsay before Sunday.

  13. Should have Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, Irsay. Peyton’s gonna throw 6 TD passes Sunday night.

  14. No one can blame Jerry Richardson for moving on after Jake Delhomme starting choking like a girl in a John Holmes movie. He needed to move on from Fox too which was just as painful.

    Irsay didn’t want to keep on coming in second everytime Peyton threw another interception in a Super Bowl so he decided to cut some bait. He should have just found a Super Bowl capable coach.

    And yeah, the fans had to suffer for a while until Luck could be drafted, but Irsay still made millions that year, so I’d say that was a win for Irsay.

    Too bad, Arthur Blank will never comprehend the importance of knowing which bait to cut as long as they let him push the wheelchairs around the sidelines….

    The owner always has to be willing to make the hardest decisions without fan approval.

    They traded Gretsky didn’t they?

    And the Modell’s moved the Browns which which ultimately led to two Super Bowls.

    The owner has to do whatever it takes…..

  15. Irsay is a continuing demonstration of the inverse relationship that often exists between great wealth and common decency.

    The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. It was his classless father Robert who snuck the Colts out of Baltimore in the dead of night.

  16. I hope Peyton drops 8 passing TDs on the Colts Sunday night. Shoot, he could even run for an additional 1 if he wanted.

    Better yet. Drop those 8 in the first half.

  17. Irsay is a clown….but how were the colts possibly supposed to pass on Luck?

    This is much ado about nothing.

  18. You would think this guy would learn to keep his mouth shut afterthought putting his foot in it so many times.

  19. He is the Miley Cyrus of football,,,, he wants to be talked about regardless of the reason or topic

  20. Some observations that fit this hilarious situation:

    1. Someone tell me what it is that the “liquored up” owner of the Colts said was wrong and when the truth scared so many people into defending the indefensible?

    2. If it is what it is, and we all know the truth here, when is it the right time for Mr. Tweet to tell the truth? Well for sure it’s not when Manning and his going for the records book offense are coming to play your club, sir. This we can surely all agree on.

    3. Egos aside, and there very big egos in this discussion from the playoff losing QB to the son of the owner / owner to the media slurps whose livelihood depends on keeping people believing they somehow have access to the real truth (aka NFL insiders), the jockeying for position resembles a jail break offensive line trying cover a blown blitz pickup: someone is left holding the bag while the QB gets crushed.

    4. From my perch the bag holder here is Manning because the truth is never altered by bad timing any more than it is by good timing.

    5. Manning is focusing on the game of course and would never get involved in such things; why should he? He has no defense for the truth that all the one and dones are there along with his dismal, non hall of fame record in the postseason. You play to win the game Herm told us once; but the truth is you play to win to play to win the playoff games…. Nothing else matters just ask Marino, Fouts, Tarkington, Moon, Kelly and so on.

    As if a crime was committed Mr. Tweet ” said “out loud what is on record in paper and known. WHEN Mr. Tweet should have said it was when his club was visiting Denver in the playoffs … Now that would have been just right.

  21. Old Man Irsay lied his way out of Baltimore, then passed the franchise off to this douche bag of a son. Little Jimmy can’t control his desires to prove that the apple didn’t fall far tree. Irsay should petition to become a Kardashian.

  22. I agree with Dungy. Irsay started all of this to try to get in Peytons head, and I hope it comes back to bite him on the arse! This guy is an egomaniac that has to be controlling to feed his god complex. I hope Peyton puts up his biggest numbers of the year! Peyton put Irsay on the map, was great for the Indianapolis community, and was the reason Lucas Oil Stadium got built. And that just scrapes the surface. Irsays only concern is he is going to feel like an idiot when Peyton comes back into the house that he built and kicks Irsays butt!

  23. After reading all these stories and comments from PFT nation. Sounds like most you didn’t read the article. I suggest you read it or read again and again and again. Irsay was knocking the organization and not Peyton himself. He’s saying he wished he would’ve put a better team around him. And this time he wants to have a well balanced team for Luck. The problem most you people on here (including Florio himself) are too stupid to comprehend on what he was saying. And say stupid sh!t about oh he’s drunk or on drugs again. I for one agree with Irsay on this. He doesn’t want to make the same mistake twice. Sure the wins and records are nice, but championships are better.

  24. Just being honest…..

    Even bad publicity is still publicity, and this will get semi fans to watch.

    This same kind of thing happened when San Fran went to KC for Young vs Montana. It just happened on a different media. People who honestly did not care turned in to watch the game then as well.

  25. I find it interesting that NFL by-laws now say there can no longer be owner-less teams like the Packers. Somehow, I think the game would be better if other teams followed that same owner-less model.

  26. If there’s one thing that’s worse than loud-mouthed, boisterous owners, it’s analysts who think they know it all. It’s Irsay’s team, and whatever decisions he makes, that’s on him. If he wants to criticize his former players, chalk it up to him being a jerk, and move on.

  27. Irsay is an inspiration to all. He is further proof that any idiot can become a billionaire.

  28. “Irresponsible [and] misleading[.] Come on . . you’re better than that, Chris.”

    Actually, he’s not. Mort is a professional liar and you’re an out of control useless brat who inherited money, Jim.

  29. The only one with any brains in this whole incident is Peyton Manning — because he’s exercising his right to remain silent.

  30. “We predict that Irsay will hear from Peyton continuously between the hours of 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.”

    What happened now?

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