The great thing about deflate-gate is that it allows us to indulge in the most ridiculous, outlandish theories about the New England Patriots ... and we might well be right!
Bill Belichick keeps an army of Tom Brady clones available for every new series? I believe it!
Microwaves on the opposition's bench slowly cook teams from the inside? Sure, why not?
The Patriots harvest the organs of veterans before cutting them? Hey, I believe it!
Now, we can add another theory to the conspiracy bonfire: Peyton Manning believed the Patriots may have bugged the visitors' locker room at Gillette Stadium. This isn't necessarily new; Manning expressed concerns many years ago, according to Peter King.
"I've always heard, reliably, that the Colts never trusted that they were totally alone in the Colts' locker room in Foxboro," King wrote, "and that when Manning had something of strategic significance to say to offensive coordinator Tom Moore, they both stepped outside into the concourse outside the locker room."
Now, Tony Dungy, Manning's coach with Indianapolis, confirmed that yes, Manning did take extra precautions when talking Xs and Os at Gillette Stadium. "That is very true," Dungy told Dan Patrick. "As Peyton talked to guys who played for the Patriots and some of the guys who came over [to the Colts], whether it is true or not, he treated it as true and we didn't have a lot of strategy discussed inside the locker room [at Gillette Stadium]."
Let's consider: Manning has faced the Patriots on New England's turf 10 times as both a member of the Colts and the Broncos. Over that 10-game span, the Patriots have won seven games (including two playoff games), Manning has won three. Shoot, that's enough verification for us!
Seriously, it's both completely plausible and utterly insane to believe that the Patriots bugged the visitors' locker room. Believe what you want; you had your mind made up when you read the headline.
And keep up with Jay over on Facebook, too.