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By / 02.05.10

The terrificly named Shane Bacon usually saves his attention for the golf world, but today he drops in to give us the poop on the game within the game. As the Colts are the favorite in this year’s big game, so does Peyton Manning’s place in corporate commercial lore loom over Drew Brees. While Brees’ team may not prevail, what about his image? Read more of Shane at Dogs That Chase Cars. And this will be it for today. Since my flight to Vegas was canceled, I’m off to catch a train to Boston. Don’t ask.

There is one thing and one thing only still interesting about “Sportscenter” — the commercials.

Long ago, when ESPN decided to run fake MLB interviews, keep Stuart Scott in my life and use touchscreens (poorly) to give us news, the “must watch now” craze of “Sportscenter” waned, and we were left with one piece of the show that is still entertaining.

Surprisingly, Sunday will bring together two of the best commercials ever made on the network, and it involves both team’s quarterbacks. One? A premier spokesperson for sports, raking in more money than a Bill Gates charity with his spots in commercials. The other? A lesser known plugger, but still someone that seems to speak well in front of a camera, almost destined to one day be in the booth with a crusty, 90-year-old Chris Berman.

Sure, some of the oldies are must-see advertising, but Peyton Manning (the best athlete-actor ever) and Drew Brees (my sleeper pick for Saturday Night Live athlete host next season) are involved in some of the classics.

The underlying question that I’m making up for this post is, which one is better?

We will start with Mr. Manning. The creativity behind this one isn’t going to force you to be jumping for the rewind button on your DVR. Peyton, as you may know, has a brother who also plays in the NFL. His name is Eli. He’s younger.

Peyton and Eli both have a father who played in the NFL. His name is Archie. He played in the NFL. The premise behind the commercial is simple — have the Manning family take a tour of the Bristol campus, and have Peyton and Eli get in trouble for horsing around. While it sounds ridiculous on paper, the execution is exception, and anytime you can include a Wet Willy in advertising, you should.

Brees, on the other hand, uses a situation and an incredible one-liner to smash is performance. Set on a Mardi Gras float, Brees is stuck trying to get into Bristol but can’t get the float to maneuver the skinny entrance.

As people are honking, Brees sticks his head out and lets everyone know, “I can’t get through the gate, the gate is narrow!”

As weird as it might seem, these things really define the two guys. Smart, funny, able to grasp the moment no matter the situation, great timing … it’s all there. It hardly ever seems like you could spend 20 minutes with Brees or Manning and be bored. Sunday, we will get to see which of the two spokespeople can take their team past the other. It might be offense and defense playing against each other, but with these two quarterbacks, it really is a head-to-head battle.


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