Why Did Peyton Manning Pick Denver: A Psychological Sports Essay

Peyton picking the Broncos over The Niners is where I need to put on my sports psychology hat.

Does Peyton want to win a championship? Of course and the Niners were clearly the best option for him to achieve that goal: Great coach, great defense, great tight end, a receiver who though a douchebag (isn’t that requirement now to be a great receiver) probably is not going to shoot or stab anyone (still shocked by Marvin, it is always quiet ones you got to worry about).

It is a no-brainer; Peyton is all about winning right?

Yes.He is a traditional alpha dog ruthless quarterback like the great ones but still a likeable family…ah, but Dr. Christoph sees psychological work at hand–the Niners who should have won that game against the Giants, would be back there in the NFC championship with a (FOX Sports executives adjust your $200.00 dress pants for the boner this is gonna cause you) Brother vs. Brother NFL Championship…I know, there would be a split screen of the game and Archie’s poker face of sadness.

This sets up psychological theory number 1: Evolutionary Psychology: Kin Selection.


That had to be on Peyton’s mind and even though he probably hates the fact that his little brother has more Superbowl rings; it has to kill him and still feel the sting of losing to the Saints in the Superbowl (quick shout out to Drew Brees, it kills me that you are not a Dolphin—the greatest mistake besides drafting Ted Ginn Jr was us taking Culpepper over you. Seriously. You are an admirable great man and I just want to thank you personally; you have been a big inspiration to me in achieving special goals. I know you were always knocked because you were undersized for a quarterback but you showed that heart is more important than height. As an average height guy that is really into tall chicks [It is freudian, my mom is taller than my dad] your determination and talent gave me great inspiration and confidence which enabled me to bang a 6ft hot virgin…I’ll always be indebted to you for that Drew. Keep being you and demand your worth and I’ll keep climbing trees) but the idea of playing against his little brother and beating him might be worst. In Kin Selection Theory using Darwinian Theory of Dawkins’ Selfish Gene Theory we do acts of altruism for those who share the same genes. It is the one time that competition even sexually can be stifled because if winning and gaining higher status hurts the person with the same genetic material it would not be a wise choice from a Neo-Darwinian Self Gene perspective.

Psychological Theory Number 2: Freudian (of the Behaviorism School)

There is a key player in the Broncos and that is John Elway. Now John Elway plays a big role in this and I think he is one who was able to influence Peyton. I would wager a first round pick that there are father issues Peyton is playing out; if you grow up with you father being a football god that will give any boy a few issues. John Elway assumes the role of loving awesome father (a very similar man to Archie) and Peyton gets to win his love by winning his father figure a ring. Now, readers we both know both men are delusional, as the Broncos aren’t that good and probably won’t be for a while but these two Hall of Famers get to live out psychological fantasies–Elway is a true narcissists who sees Peyton as himself: a talented quarterback who in his mid thirties is ready to win 2 Superbowls (Who will be Peyton’s Terrel Davis) where Elway can relive his greatest moments through Peyton and not have to watch the option ever again while Peyton can win the admiration of his father all over again as winning for Daddy Elway means he is good enough to live in his father’s foot steps.

Psychological Theory Number 3: Humanistic Psychology

In Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs there is one goal after all your needs and your wants are met–self-actualization.


When you host SNL and win a Superbowl what do you do next? Where do you go? Do you win another super bowl, host SNL again? Are do you live out a dream (cue music by Sting, Elton John, Coldplay or any music that is pleasant that I imagine a gynecologist plays while performing a pap smear) of playing for one of your heroes. In a humanist psychology Manning’s motivation could just be the enjoyment of playing for Elway and being beloved in Denver. Maybe he wins maybe he doesn’t; maybe it’s not even about winning. Maybe it is just about enjoying the game and the people around him. Sometimes something just sounds so enjoyable that you do not care about the actual outcome.

As a devil inspired rock musician if I got two options to record with a new genius producer who will makes my songs sound amazing or be produced by Marilyn Manson (brilliant artist, who does not get his due) that would be tough decision. Yes, I get more of a chance of “success” with this mastermind producer but on the other hand I get to play with my one of my musical heroes and I must admit it is enticing to work on a song and then go watch Eastbound and Down while doing coke with Marilyn Manson sounds pretty awesome. Would it lead to best recording quality, maybe not, but what an experience that would be. The right thing would be more to go to the nerdy genius producer but we don’t always do the right thing. We sometimes just do what “feels” right.

psychological Theory Number 4: Nihilistic Greed

He just could have really liked the idea of making 90 Million dollars while fucking over a Gator…


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