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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, February 3, 2003

Manning calls Colts teammate an 'idiot'

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Associated Press

Peyton Manning called teammate Mike Vanderjagt an "idiot kicker" at the Pro Bowl yesterday, three days after Vanderjagt apologized for making disparaging remarks about the Indianapolis Colts quarterback.

"The sad thing is, he's a good kicker," Peyton Manning said about teammate Mike Vanderjagt. "But he's an idiot."

Associated Press

Manning made the comment during a live interview on ABC. He also claimed Vanderjagt was "liquored up" at the time of the Canadian cable TV interview last week in which he said Manning should show more emotion.

"Here we are," Manning said. "I'm out at my third Pro Bowl, I'm about to go in and throw a touchdown to Jerry Rice, we're honoring the Hall of Fame, and we're talking about our idiot kicker who got liquored up and ran his mouth off.

"The sad thing is, he's a good kicker. He's a good kicker. But he's an idiot."

Vanderjagt also criticized Colts coach Tony Dungy in the interview with The Score, a Toronto-based cable sports network.

"I'm not a real big Colts fan right now, unfortunately. I just don't see us getting better," Vanderjagt said during the interview.

"Coach Dungy, he's just a mild-mannered guy. He doesn't get too excited, he doesn't get too down and I don't think that works, either. ... I think you need a motivator, I think you need a guy that is going to get in somebody's face when they're not performing well enough."

Vanderjagt, the most accurate field-goal kicker in NFL history, apologized Thursday to Dungy, Manning and the rest of his teammates. He signed a $7.75 million, five-year contract extension with the Colts in November 2000 — at the time making him the league's highest-paid kicker.

"When I get home, I'll deal with it," Manning said. "If he is still a teammate, we'll deal with it. That remains to be seen."