by Justin Henry
Cold Hard Football Facts' Meme Machine (@jrhwriting)
There are plenty of detractors of Peyton Manning and Tom Brady and, by extension, their seemingly annual meeting. NBC and NFL Network's hyperdrive build-up to the game only exacerbates that dislike.
I disagree with the detraction. Instead, I look forward to a game like this. Whenever I take in an old NFL Films production, like one of the yearbooks, I'm inundated with the stars of the period in a whirling kaleidoscope of historic imagery. Seeing Terry Bradshaw, Dan Fouts, Roger Staubach, and Fran Tarkenton in the panorama makes me wish I could have seen their classic head-to-head battles live.
Having Manning vs. Brady is likely the closest thing we get in 2013 to seeing future history-reel fodder play out before our eyes. Yes, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers are both tremendous quarterbacks who will have their busts unveiled on a distant day, but Manning vs. Brady, there's just this mystique about it.
The NFL overhypes and overplays a lot of matchups, personalities, and angles. This is one of the few that's truly worth the excess.