During his illustrious NFL career, Peyton Manning faced off against the New England Patriots numerous times. He went up against Tom Brady and Bill Belichick at the height of the organization’s success, so the results were mixed. Manning also played for the Patriots before, during, and after the “Spygate” scandal, in which the team was caught illegally videotaping coaching signals. As a result, the former Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos quarterback devised a unique strategy for facing the Patriots. Peyton shared with his brother Eli on ESPN’s Monday Night Football simulcast that he used to meet with his receivers away from his locker out of fear of being bugged. Instead, he talked to his teammates in the shower, which was the next most logical place. Peyton said, via Jimmy Traina of SI.com, “Every time I played against New England, I used to talk to my receivers in the showers.” “Don’t mention a play near my locker because I’m sure it’s rigged..” I’m sure there’s a hot mic in there. It was strange to see seven guys in the shower at the same time.
“Every time I played against New England, I used to talk to my receivers in the showers. Don’t talk about a play next to my locker because I know it’s bugged. I know it’s got a hot mic in there. Very strange to see 7 guys hanging out in the shower.” – Peyton Manning
— Jimmy Traina (@JimmyTraina) September 21, 2021
Manning could have been exaggerating about the lengths he went to keep his team’s secrets out of the Patriots’ hands, or he could have been telling the truth. Peyton’s disdain for New England’s tactics reached an all-time high during his prime, so it wouldn’t be surprising if he tried to get a leg up on his toughest rival.
While Manning’s shower meetings may have made him feel more secure, they didn’t necessarily translate into more success against the Patriots. Over the course of his career, the Hall of Famer was 6-11 against Tom Brady.
Due to anecdotes like Peyton’s about the Patriots, the Manning brothers’ broadcast has been wildly entertaining over the last two weeks. Fans interested in learning more about the two quarterbacks’ careers and receiving unique analysis should tune in to the telecast in the future. 004