NEW ORLEANS -- Alec Baldwin was on fire. Hosting "NFL Honors" for the second consecutive year, the "30 Rock" star delivered a monologue Saturday night that amounted to a roast of the NFL's biggest stars.
Baldwin's delivery was superb, as was the reaction of the targets of his ribbing, which ranged from genuinely entertained to profoundly uncomfortable. We thought Peyton Manning's head was going to explode at one point. Seriously.
Some greatest hits ...
» Baldwin came out, grabbed a piece of grassy turf, and attempted the Ray Lewis squirrel dance before feigning injury. "That deer urine spray didn't really work. Oh, deer antler spray."
» After remarking upon the dangers of poking fun at the massive athletic freaks in the room, Baldwin said J.J. Watt answers the question of what would happen if Rocky Balboa and Ivan Drago had a son together. A great call.
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» "It's exciting to be here in New Orleans. Things have been pretty out of control all week in the French Quarter. Drinking, partying, nudity ... and that's just Rob Gronkowski." You're not going to believe this, but Gronk looked confused.
» Baldwin said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell was ensuring his safety in post-bounty New Orleans by wearing Saints quarterback Drew Brees. Not a Drew Brees jersey, actually Drew Brees. Goodell appeared to be weighing Baldwin's fate as the audience roared with laughter.
» Baldwin complimented Andrew Luck for overcoming a "debilitating neck beard" during his rookie season. Russell Wilson threw for 3,000 yards and endured "3,000 hugs" from Pete Carroll. Robert Griffin III discovered there were commercials he wasn't even in.
» After mentioning the amazing seasons of Griffin and Peyton Manning, Baldwin quipped, "Brett Favre heard the word 'comeback' and woke up. Go back to sleep, Brett." Favre appeared mildly amused, and truthfully, a tad groggy. The biggest laugh of the night.
» Baldwin on Peyton Manning's recovery and the timing of the Denver Broncos' 11-game winning streak: "Is it me, or did Peyton stop feeling the pain right around the time Colorado legalized marijuana?"
» Peyton was also the target of the deepest cut by Baldwin: "Jim Harbaugh and John Harbaugh, brother against brother, one of them will be victorious and will have to assume the burden of being the most successful brother. It's a curse ... am I right, Eli?" Cut to Peyton and Eli sitting together, openly searching for a rock to hide under.
Yes, that was the moment we thought Peyton Manning skull fragments were about to rain down upon the well-groomed audience. Luckily, that was not the case.
Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.