Statue?!? Jim Mora skipping Peyton Manning ceremony due to bitterness at Colts

Jim Mora said he declined an invitation from Peyton Manning to attend Manning’s statue ceremony in October. (AP)

You apparently don’t want to get on Jim Mora’s bad side, because the man does not let go of a grudge easily.

Mora, the former New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts coach forever famous for his “playoffs?!?” rant, won’t be attending Peyton Manning’s statue ceremony in October. Mora was Manning’s first NFL coach, and the legendary quarterback invited Mora to attend. Manning’s statue will be unveiled Oct. 8 outside Lucas Oil Stadium.

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But Mora still is angry at the Colts, and specifically former general manager Bill Polian, for how his firing went down after the 2001 season. Yeah, that was more than 15 years ago.

“I told (Manning) I wasn’t going to come,” Mora told WNDE’s “Query & Schultz” radio show on Wednesday, according to the Indianapolis Star. “I had reasons. I would love to come back there, but because of the way I left the Colts, my relationship with Polian, I don’t know. I just wouldn’t feel that I would feel comfortable being there.”

Mora said on the show that he was told by Polian after the 2001 season to fire defensive coordinator Vic Fangio. Mora refused. After some discussions with owner Jim Irsay, Mora still refused. So he was fired.

The Colts hired Tony Dungy, who eventually led the Colts to a Super Bowl. Dungy made the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Mora still has a grudge.

“I would love to come, but I think I would just feel a little bit awkward there,” Mora told WNDE. “It was a big part of my career. I coached some really good players there. I loved the organization. I loved the city. It was a great city.”

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdown.corner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!