Which NFL Players’ DirecTV Alter-Egos Would Make Good Football Players?

We’ve all seen the slew of DirecTV ads for NFL Sunday Ticket, the ones that utilize the current slate of NFL talent in order to sell you on the idea that you need to see every game of football every Sunday. DirecTV went back to the well this year, re-imagining their controversial campaign featuring Rob Lowe with famous players like Eli Manning and Tony Romo.

But my first thought upon viewing had nothing to do with paying for television subscriptions. Instead I was hit with the prospect of an alternate timeline full of talent that could be brought in, swapped, or combined with their “real” world counterparts. It could be for public appearances, meetings with fans or, in Peyton Manning’s case, shilling for as many products as possible. The most obvious use could be on their respective football teams (or opposing team if the corpse of Al Davis had his way). Just imagine a league where two Peyton Mannings could stroll onto the field or where dueling versions of Andrew Luck could practice going long with almost identical versions of Randy Moss. It’s truly something wonderful out of The Twilight Zone.

But you’ll notice I said “almost identical.” Not every double remains alike and some aren’t fit for the football field. That’s where this helpful run down comes into play. Let’s go down the line and find out which of DirecTV’s doppelgangers would be prime candidates to replace their NFL version, and which should be left sitting at home. Just because you refuse to purchase a highly expensive television package, doesn’t mean you can’t pick up a ball and win for your team. Not to mention your lazy NFL mainstays are too busy sitting around watching other teams on their damn phones and televisions.

“Bad Comedian” Eli Manning

So we’ve been down the road with Comedian Eli before, saying he was going to be more fun to hang around with than the real Eli Manning. That still stands true and this version of Eli is going to know how to have a better time out on the town, in the sleaziest corners, with the colorful people.

This doesn’t make the trip to the football field. While the real Manning is at home watching football on TV, this Eli could be in the huddle, telling bad jokes and throwing everybody off via annoyance. An entire offensive line could take a dive in order to end the misery of having to hear about joke about Eli’s fat mother-in-law. Another strike against him? The glasses. If those are prescriptions, there’s no way he could properly take the field for the Giants. There’s no time to get him corrective surgery, so we’d be stuck with this loser QB forced to wear a single bar helmet.

This sorta thing could be a plus, but it’s going to be a distraction for the team at the end of the day. This Eli is a no-go.

“Arts & Craftsy” Tony Romo

How do you tell the difference between the real and parallel Tony Romo? The hair, of course. Not much else is going to be different and the DirecTV version might even feature a few variables that Dallas’ current QB doesn’t have — namely, that calming attitude. Put him in the huddle and guys just feel better about themselves, boosting their confidence and making them play better on the field. Don’t forget that Artsy Tony Romo is also more focused because he’s not letting his emotions get in the way. That’s going to allow him to put the game in his sights and get the ball to whomever needs it.

A slight issue is that hair. How are you going to properly fit it under a helmet? It’d be one thing if Conway Twitty were still kicking around, we might be able to slap a helmet on him and find out for real. But for now, all we have is speculation. I’ll say this, if they can fit a helmet on Terry Bradshaw’s thick head, they can do it for Artsy Romo. Stay home with the wife and kid Tony, we have you covered. This guy is winning games and ensuring that stress is non-existent in the locker room.

“Petite” Randy Moss

What a waste of talent. The real Randy Moss could be 80 years old and Petite Randy would still be the lesser version. Not only is he short, making him less athletically inclined than the real world version, he’s also clearly stupid. No fruity munch cereal is going to be on the top shelf at the grocery store, you’re clearly being had. Not to mention that if your legs are too short to reach the coffee table, you should pull the coffee table toward you.

Everything about this guy makes him the worst of the bunch, with the top reason being that he’s just not built for athletics. Now sure, given that we’re dealing with parallel dimensions and rips in the fabric of space time, we could transplant some longer legs on there or boost up his intelligence with chemicals. But he’s still a sad sack. A wimp. A guy who has the confidence of a tiny puppy in a thunderstorm. He’s the kinda guy you’ll find sitting on a park bench on a weekday, attempting to feed the birds and failing.

One final note on this guy? Head is too big. I think he might need to see a doctor, quick.

“Out Of Control Beard” Andrew Luck

This guy is the all-star of the DirecTV squad. The rest have their faults, be it annoying qualities, bad hair, or tiny brains (save for a tumor), but Andrew Luck with an out of control beard? Pure victory without a shirt. The reason is simple: It’s literally still Andrew Luck, but he’s got a giant beard.

Luck is still the same guy physically, possibly a little different fiscally, and definitely enhanced cosmetically. Paul Bunyan kneels in his presence and ZZ Top tell him, “nice beard.” Could it be a problem on the field? Sure, but Troy Polamalu played 12 years with hair that looked like a weed woven into a wig and he did just fine. Yeah, it does pose a problem when opposing players start tugging and pulling at it, but this is a quarterback we’re talking about. If his line of giant warriors can’t hold back the enemy players long enough for this viking warlord to hurl a ball down the field, they’re not worth keeping on the team and should be cut immediately. This Luck is a player that deserves the top of the heap.

“Really High Voice” Peyton Manning

The same thing can’t be said for this high-pitched version of Peyton Manning. Much like the bearded Luck warrior above, this version of Manning looks extremely similar to his real-world counterpart. There’s just one fatal flaw in having such a high-pitched voice: No one on the team is going to take you seriously. Nor are the opposing players.

Just imagine hearing this chump cry about his neck or yell “Omaha!” at the line of scrimmage. If you’re lucky, the opposition might fall over laughing or maybe fall into confusion. The worst case is your own players don’t respect you. That’s a surefire way to lose. Another issue would be the dead giveaway in the huddle. There’s no masking or hiding a voice like that.

Away from the voice, the biggest problem for this guy is his place in the Four Tunesman. You don’t just join a musical group and juggle a professional football career at the same time. So he’s out:

Honorable Mentions:

“Football On Your Phone” Eli & Peyton

This one is disqualified from the initial slate because they’re from a few years ago, but they’re probably worth a bench spot at least. The hair alone is a reason to keep them around, as long as they don’t try to sing. Also Archie Manning looks like a classy dude in his Elvis getup.

“Cat Lover” Andrew Luck

Unlike the super-bearded Andrew Luck above, this version isn’t in the typical DirecTV commercials and can’t make the cut. I also wouldn’t want him because he’s a cat person and cats are demons sent from Hell to ensure our souls are as sour as theirs when oblivion comes. The Egyptians were wrong.