Lowe unleashed a social-media firestorm — or at least a lot of people saying “Wha …?” — Wednesday afternoon (Jan. 18) when he tweeted the following: “Hearing my fave, #18 Peyton Manning will not return to #NFL. Wow. #Colts.”
Manning missed all of the 2011 NFL season while he was rehabilitating from a neck injury. Without him, the Indianapolis Colts had their first losing season since 2001, finishing 2-14. The dismal record has led to the firing of the team’s vice chairman, general manager and head coach — but it also put them in position to choose Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck with the first pick in this year’s draft.
So, how would Rob Lowe know anything at all about Manning’s plans? He’s friends with Colts owner Jim Irsay, so it’s conceivable that he would have some knowledge of the situation. But he also seems to be the only one with this information: Neither Manning’s agent nor his dad, former NFL great Archie Manning, knew anything about it when reporters contacted them for comment on Lowe’s assertion.
Lowe followed up by tweeting that he didn’t want to see Manning retire: “Colts fans, let’s hope my info is wrong. Don’t like being wrong, but this time… I’m hoping.”
Lowe’s tweets generated a predictably high volume of snark in response. Our favorite comes from another “West Wing” alumnus, Josh Malina: “Hearing my fave, @RobLowe, will retire from acting, and I will join #ParksAndRec. Wow. #ineedthework.”