This weekend, we’re ready to witness another chapter in the Tom Brady-Peyton Manning rivalry.
The book has been written for years, but this next chapter is just as important as any of the previous match-ups.
We’ve seen it before and we’ll see it again. But is it tiring? Is it getting old to refer to this match-up as a rivalry?
The simple answer: no.
No matter how many times these two face off, whether in the playoffs or during the season, it will always mean something to the two of them.
They’ve faced off 16 times, and will face off potentially for the last time in this weekend’s AFC Championship Game.
Win, and you’re in the Super Bowl. Lose, and you’re heading home.
It doesn’t get better than this.
A rivalry isn’t something that simply dissipates. The Yankees and Red Sox have been feuding for almost a century and still, the rivalry is alive and well.
But a rivalry doesn’t have to be violent or dirty; it is a face-off between players of high-caliber. And when it comes to the game of football, you’re looking at Manning and Brady as two of the best in the business.
In their 16 starts against each other, Brady has taken a dominant 11-5 lead. However, in the playoffs, Manning and Brady both have logged two wins apiece. The winner on Sunday would prove to be the more dominant playoff quarterback.
Manning has one ring. Brady has four.
Both have received Super Bowl MVP honors.
Looking at stats, these two are the best in the game and have been for years. The competition between the two goes beyond fun, it is truly a rivalry for the ages.
Manning and Brady enter these games with the same attitude as if it were a do-or-die game. And this time, it is.
And while they respect the game, more importantly, they respect each other’s talents, which makes this rivalry that much more enjoyable.
They're portrayed to be pure enemies, and yet they have nothing but the utmost respect for the way the other plays.
Now that is quite different than some of the other rivalries we’ve seen over the years.
People will enjoy watching other rivalries for the entertainment factor. The possibility that any second, a fight could break out and tempers would flare.
But hey, that's exciting, right?
But how about seeing two of the greatest quarterbacks and facing off in a high-energy environment on the road to Super Bowl 50?
Yeah, that’s my kind of rivalry.
And yes, it still exists, even for the 17th time.
Both quarterbacks have led dominant teams into the playoffs for several seasons, and have the same goal in mind this year: to finish the season on top.
We may act like we’ve seen it before, but when you hear Brady vs. Manning, you have to get excited. So sit back, grab a snack and relax. It is time to enjoy one great football rivalry amongst two of the best.
And, who knows? This may be the last chapter in an epic story.