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Wrap Up

Michael Wilbon

Congratulations to Tony Dungy and Peyton Manning and the club's president, Bill Polian. These are guys who've been in football for a lifetime and each has won for the first time. Dungy was close but didn't win in Tampa. Manning was close but didn't win at the University of Tennessee and in Indy...Polian was the mastermind of Super Bowl teams in Buffalo and Carolina that didn't ultimately win...And the Colts were superior to the Bears tonight in executing their game plans, on offense and defense.
Defensively, they took advantage of Ron Turner and Rex Grossman, which is the prescription for beating the Bears.
Offensively, they were able to play keep away enough to tire out the Bears offense AND score 22 points. Grossman gave Indy the other seven...
As a Bears fan, if you told me the Colts offense would put up a total of 22 points, would I take that? yes. I thought the Bears needed to score 31 points to win this game, and that Peyton would probably put up 28...So the 29 points isn't shocking...It's the way the Colts moved the ball. They were more physical, outplayed their Bears D-Line...So much of that is because the Bears offense couldn't stay on the field long enough to give the defense any kind of rest...which again leads me to culprits Ron Turner and Rex Grossman...
The great thing for Manning is he never has to deal with the possibility of not winning a Super Bowl. He's won one more than Marino, the same number as Steve Young (well, Young was on the Montana-led Niners teams, but you know what I mean)...the same number as Brett Favre...And now, with all that burden off of him, it'll be interesting to see if the Colts really fly now...
For the Bears, they're going to have to figure out whether Rex Grossman is a championship quarterback. It will be interesting...not what they say after the game or in the coming weeks, but when camp begins...I can't see Grossman becoming the kind of QB who can win it all...and this is most likely as close as the Bears will get with him. The Bears will have to, through free agency or trade or drafting, acquire a franchise QB...that's my take but who knows if the club executives will feel the same way.

Anyway, this blogging experience is so, so new...But it will become a bigger feature, especially with big events, like the Final Four and other championship events...For those of you who join the Chat House, we'll be doing that tomorrow at 1:15 as usual...I won't be in the best mood then either...At least, however, I get to see a smile on the face of Tony Dungy to end a season...I've known him most of my professional career and admire and respect him tremendously...Good for Tony, after all he's been through in his career. I couldn't be happier for him...

Thanks everybody...and Goodnite

By Michael Wilbon |  February 4, 2007; 9:35 PM ET  | Category:  Michael Wilbon
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Thanks for blogging, Mike!

Posted by: Phil | February 4, 2007 10:02 PM

You did a good job Mike. Maybe you can do it again on Selection Sunday. You can keep us up to date on the number of pizzas that Junior eats.

Posted by: David Vair | February 4, 2007 10:02 PM

Thank you so much, Mike. Especially for being honest about what you felt about this Bears team not quite being there...

LOVE seeing Dungy win this SB. And Manning. I love it. Good guys finishing FIRST.

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | February 4, 2007 10:06 PM

Thanks Mike.

Sorry for the loss. Chicago seems pretty quiet right now/ We're all just disappointed about this loss, but you have to admire guys like Peyton, Tony, and Bill.

Chris

Posted by: Blackaces | February 4, 2007 10:09 PM

Yes, thanks for blogging, Mike. Sorry about your Bears. At least they had a great season....unlike my beloved Redskins.

Posted by: Lisa | February 4, 2007 10:10 PM

We can all officially start saying... WE'LL GET 'EM NEXT YEAR!

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | February 4, 2007 10:11 PM

Hey, pitchers and catchers will start reporting next week!

Posted by: Phil | February 4, 2007 10:12 PM

Hey Mike... your Bears were absolutely Gross.

Posted by: Al | February 4, 2007 10:13 PM

You got the hang of this blogging thing, Mike! Great job. Sorry your team didn't win but I appreciate your graciousness about the Colts' win.

Posted by: pfitz | February 4, 2007 10:13 PM

Yo.. you really backed the wrong horse. its an absolute waste of time watching their performance.

Posted by: TJ Goss | February 4, 2007 10:15 PM

MW - Thanks for blogging with all of us - great job

Posted by: Joe Hellner | February 4, 2007 10:15 PM

I think the bigger news right now is that Dominic Rhodes got jobbed out of his MVP Award. Peyton shouldn't have gotten it. He probably only got it because of all the crap he's gone through.

Posted by: Bill Lehecka | February 4, 2007 10:17 PM

If we've learned anything, it's that Super Bowl MVP is as subjective as Hall of Fame player. So I'm ok with Peyton winning it... fine, okay, fine.

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | February 4, 2007 10:19 PM

This final sign-off analysis is just the way a politician would do it. You find ways of trying to rationalize the win. Really pathetic QB play and the defense was a leaky sieve. Grossman is the latest Danny Wuerfel from FL.

Posted by: iwanaqb | February 4, 2007 10:20 PM

HUGE shoutout to Wilby for writing for A1 today, flying to Cleveland for hoops, then flying here and blogging his guts out for the first time ever. If there were any justice, he would have been rewarded with a win.
I'll see what we can do about a Selection Sunday blog....
Thanks to all of you for hanging out in our bloghouse. We had almost 900 entries in, what, five hours? You guys rule!
God, I hate the King.

Posted by: Cindy | February 4, 2007 10:22 PM

Bummer bout the Bears Wilbon. Fellow fan here who just couldn't admit that Grossman would never get it done. Oh well, move over Bears hysteria. Pinella and the boys are staged to take center stage come October.

Posted by: Joel K | February 4, 2007 10:27 PM

Colts deserved this one tonight - couldn't believe there was only one k-fed commercial.

Posted by: LetsGoMets | February 4, 2007 10:37 PM

Mike-As another Chicago transplant, I usually love your commentary, but gotta disagree with you on this one. One Superbowl loss does not a failed quarterback make. Rex certainly looked terrible tonight, as he did over several games this season. But, at the risk of beating a cliche to death, he's still a young quarterback and we should give him at least another season before tolling the funeral bells. How many young QBs get the character-building experience of playing in a SB at all at this stage in their career? I'm thinking of the last few years and Brady is the only one I can think of. Rex is clearly no Brady, but I would much rather see how he responds to a disappointment like this before throwing Bears fandom onto the slings and arrows of free agency.

Posted by: Jeff W | February 4, 2007 10:39 PM

Tough loss but it was only a matter of time for the Colts. They've been too good for too long. I don't think any team in the league was going to stop them, certainly not one with Grossman at the helm

Posted by: Supreme Wu | February 4, 2007 10:43 PM

The only thing that makes me feel better about Art Monk not getting into the HoF is that Wilbon is upset that da Bears lost.

Posted by: HankTheCat | February 4, 2007 11:27 PM

That's pretty thin soup, Hank. Hope that sustains you through the offseason.

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | February 4, 2007 11:54 PM

My last comment sounded super jerky, Hank. Sorry about that. I just mean that Wilbon's disappointment about the Bears/SB and our disappointment about Monk/HOF are two very different things. If Wilbon were on record as anti-Monk that would be different, but Wilbon is on record as the opposite.

Anyhoo, it's over. The 2006 season is over, and the next NFL event of real import is the draft...

HAIL SKINS

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | February 5, 2007 12:17 AM

why don't all these people comment on steinberg's blog?

I know you all read it!

Posted by: littles | February 5, 2007 03:19 AM

Alot of blaming Grossman, guys, but how many plays did Indy run ? Blame your precious big bad D, they laid an egg. They stopped Indy in the red zone, but gads, Manning sure rolled them up and down the field. And yeah, the Bears D was tired, but the Indy offense played just as many downs.

Posted by: trawler | February 5, 2007 07:34 AM

I agree with Wilbon, Chicago should take the 22 points allowed on D. But that means they did a good job. Sure they could have had a couple more stops on 3rd down but the bigger problem was their own offense never getting 1st downs and having 5 TOs. So they played not 30 but 40 mins and still held them to 22 points on O. This team has won a lot of games the past 2 years where they had fewer yards gained, that wasn't the problem.

Posted by: | February 6, 2007 09:26 PM

Fast facts:

Lowest QB rating all time for a SB MVP:
Peyton Manning, 81.8, XVI
Two FG drives in second half in close game... pretty sad, but if you want to crown his...

QBs with lower QB ratings than Rex in SB:
Marino SB XIX
Unitas SB III


Posted by: kemurph | February 6, 2007 09:29 PM

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