FanPost

In defense of Tony Mandarich

Hey guys this is MasterRWayne and I am a writer for the Colts blog at www.stampedeblue.com.

I wrote an article detailing Mandarich's interview on "Inside the NFL" because he made his comeback with the Colts and started for us from 1996-1998. Now I know Mandarich is hated by you guys because he was a draft bust, but allow me to say two things.

1. Mandarich was a VERY good starting NFL lineman for the Colts. In fact, he was a bright spot on an otherwise talented, but inexperienced O-line that featured rookies at LT and LG. The bottom line is that Mandarich turned his life around, got sober and played his guts out for the Colts. In fact, he was part of the Colts 1997 victory over the Packers in which an 0-9 Colts team defeated a then 9-0 Packers team. One of my favorite Colts memories is him running down the field with his helmet off after the game winning field goal went through.

2. I had the pleasure of meeting Tony Mandarich in 1999 shortly after his retirement and he was kind, humble and respectful. I was working at Starbucks back then and I recognized him and he took time out of his day to talk football with me.

My point is that Tony Mandarich seems, both from the "Inside the NFL" and my personal experience, like a good person who made a lot of dumb mistakes when he was in his early 20's and then turned his life around. In short, Tony Mandarich as a Colt was a different player and a different person than Tony Mandarich as a Packer.

So yeah you can be upset about how Tony Mandarich was a "draft bust" for you guys, but you have to recognize that the guy fought hard to turn his life around and never gave up. You just have to respect that.

FanPosts are designed to be used to start a conversation on a specific topic, not unlike a front page story. They have a 75-word minimum: If you don't have much to say on a topic, consider using a FanShot.

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