The Colts were just reaping the karma of throwing games at the end of the season. To me, it was a chink in the armor that grew into a Super Bowl loss. Peyton did not look like a champion at all in the shots of him on the sidelines throughout the game. He knew that they were in big trouble early, though the score did not reflect, and he could not turn it around. I guess having the team refreshed and rested for the big game turned out to be a poor strategy.
That was the coaches decision--made Manning mad.