Reggie Wayne did something yesterday that made a lot of our skins crawl. He inked a one year deal with the hated New England Patriots. Yes, at first it upset me. I was thinking, “How could he go there?” “How could he betray our city like that?” “Can we get the key to the city back now?” After the initial shock wore off I really thought about it though. I came to a conclusion and wondered how could we blame Reggie?
Here is the skinny. Reggie told the Colts he wanted one more year here in Indy and was basically shown the door in the nicest way possible. It broke our hearts just like it did when Peyton was shown the door. Reggie means a lot to this fan base and the city of Indianapolis. Yes, it sucks that he will be catching balls from Tom Brady (hold on while I vomit in my own mouth) and will be coached by Bill Belichick (again, going to be sick), but can you really blame him? He openly said he wasn’t done and he didn’t want to go out in any other way than by his own hands. He openly said that he wanted to play at least one more year. Injuries plagued his last two seasons and he quite frankly wasn’t the same player by last season’s end. That doesn’t change the fact that he still wants to play. Did anyone really think he would just go somewhere that would sign him? I surely hope you didn’t. There was word that Green Bay wanted in as well, but evidently Reggie felt New England was a better fit for him.
I want to squash a couple of things right now. Some of the comments or meme’s that I have seen in the last 24 hours are upsetting. Calling Reggie a traitor (or “trader” for the less intelligently put ones) and that he always wanted to play in New England. Fans saying they have lost respect for Reggie now is worrisome. How in the hell can anyone say that? If anyone remembers right in 2012 he had a chance to bail on a team that looked like it was rebuilding. Did he leave? No he didn’t. He signed a deal keeping him in Indy for a few more years and helped bring along T.Y. and Moncrief. He was Luck’s security blanket when he was on the field. If he was a traitor, or wanted to jump ship, don’t you think he would have done it then? I sure do. In fact, New England showed a ton of desire to sign him if the Colts didn’t.
Now, for all of you who have said they have lost respect for Reggie I have one thing to say to you. Why? He has given his everything for this team and this city. He has been the one constant here all along. He has been Mr. Colt for years and now that he is doing what he feels is right for him and his career you have lost respect for him? A question was posed to one of my favorite sports radio broadcasters, JMV, yesterday and I think I will pose the same question. Would it have hurt more or less if he left in 2012 to go to New England? I think it’s safe to say that the majority of you would have really been pissed had he done it then instead of sticking around when this team and organization needed him the most.
Reggie Wayne will always be a Colt, just as Peyton will always be one. No matter where they go they will be loved and revered in this city. On October 18th, 2015 we can all shed a tear and thank him for his years of service and then watch our boys in blue beat the Patriots. After that game we can all go back to loving Reggie, but for that 3 1/2 hour time frame he will be the enemy. Besides, it isn’t like he would have made the roster with how stacked we are at wide receiver. So I asked all of you to please stop with this hatred toward a man that you have loved and been so glad to see in a Colts uniform for the last several years. Always remember that if he had it his way he would have stayed in Indy, but that isn’t how it worked out. You can’t blame Reggie any more than you could have blamed Manning for doing what he did. Both men knew their time wasn’t up but the Colts felt their time was up in their organization. I know it’s hard to be happy for a Patriots player, but this time it’s necessary. I for one want to wish Reggie the best of luck in New England. He really found a place where he can have one more season under the lights and one on a team where a Super Bowl shot is very real. Good luck Reggie and thank you for everything.