DENVER — Broncos head coach John Fox took to one of his favorite movies to describe his feeling about hosting Sunday’s playoff game against the San Diego Chargers.
“To quote an old movie, The Wizard Of Oz, ‘There’s no place like home,'” he said with a chuckle during a briefing with the press Wednesday.
The Broncos are in the exact same position as they were last year before losing to the visiting Baltimore Ravens.
As Fox put it bluntly, “there’s always pressure to win games, especially in the playoffs.”
The pressure is targeted at Peyton Manning. For as great as the future hall-of-fame quarterback has been throughout his career, he does have the reputation of being very average in the post-season — his playoff record, 9-11, reflects that.
According to Manning though, the only thing that matters now is, “I know a lot of people take a whole bunch of playoff seasons and lump them all together. I personally don’t believe in that theory. I don’t think that’s how it works. I think each season takes on it’s own identity.”
At 37, the the 16-year veteran admitted his playing window might be closing.
“Certainly, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel for me, which makes me enjoy these things even more,” he said.
As for whether or not the always hard-working and concentrated Manning is mixing in some fun during this preparation period: “That is certainly my goal, to enjoy the preparation, to enjoy being around the guys.”
“It all depends what attitude you want to approach it with. If it’s just miserable, then why are you doing it,” Manning said.
Rivers ready for rematch
Whether he is talking trash with Jay Cutler or getting the fans riled up, Philip Rivers is a guy Broncos fans love to hate.
Even more irritating, he’s good here. Really good.
Rivers has won 6 out of the last 8 games in Denver.
He is 2-0 against Peyton Manning led teams in the playoffs.
“I have great respect for the Denver fans, first class football, there’s no hate on my end.”
The Chargers last playoff win was in 2008, against Manning’s Colts.
Under new head coach, former Broncos offensive coordinator, Mike McCoy, the Chargers found their way into the playoffs.
Peyton Manning says the credit belongs to Philip Rivers.
“It can usually take 1,2 or even 3 yeas to adjust to a new offensive scheme, the success they’ve had belongs to the QB,” Manning said.
The broncos chargers kickoff at 2:40 p.m. on Sunday.