With the Indianapolis Colts about to face the New Orleans Saints in the Super Bowl on Feb 7, I’ve heard a variety of emotions this past week . There are differing views here in Baltimore, on how we look at the Colts. You have the fan who will always see the horseshoe, and the blue and white uniforms, and are reminded of the glory days of Johnny Unitas, Lenny Moore, & John Mackey. Then you have fans who remember the Mike Pagel led Colts who couldn’t get out of their own way.
I’m of the opinion that in Baltimore, old Colts fans would have digested the move to Indianapolis a lot easier if the colors, logo, & all records associated with their stay here in Baltimore would have remained in Baltimore. I say that, assuming that at some point we would have got another team. I for one would never tell anyone how they should feel about this, but sometimes I think Baltimore fans are a bit hypocritical about the situation. It is always said that Art Modell did the right thing by leaving the legacy of the Cleveland Browns intact, and starting over as an expansion team, to be called the Baltimore Ravens. Art Modell not only wanted to move his team, but he wanted to bring the name and all the history along with it. Only after settling law suits fighting the move of his franchise did he decide to leave the legacy behind and start brand new.
When the Ravens started play in 1996, I was not completely happy about the move, because I felt that we (Baltimore) were no better than the city of Indianapolis, for taking someones team. As the years went on, and Cleveland was guaranteed that the Browns would return in 1999, I slowly embraced the Ravens and by the 1998 season I was glued to my TV every Sunday.
The one argument that old Colts fans make here (in Baltimore) that I think kind of makes no sense to me, is that the history should remain here. The truth of the matter is, the history has never left, because it was made here. People in Indianapolis only have the colors, and the logo. Baltimore has the history and all the great memories right here in the Charm City, and we need to embrace that history even more now than ever. Since Peyton Manning has arrived in Indy, he has given that city some history. They now have something to call their own.
The Hall Of Fame in Canton, doesn’t separate the Baltimore Colts from Indianapolis, but Baltimore, hasn’t let anyone who will listen, forget that Baltimore Colts history. We have a statue of Johnny Unitas in front of stadium. The old Colts like Johnny U, Lenny Moore, Art Donavon, Tom Matte, just to name a few have said it loud and clear that they are Baltimore Colts. So I say we honor our team and hold them up, in the only way that they should be, as Baltimore Colts!