By Ray Rahman
Updated February 05, 2016 at 05:59 PM EST
Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver

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John Oliver’s HBO show doesn’t return until Feb. 14, a full week after this Sunday’s Super Bowl. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a lot of thoughts on the big game.

When asked by EW in an interview this week about his Super Bowl plans, the Last Week Tonight host replied: “I definitely will watch it. I would like Peyton Manning to win — and retire. Whatever it takes for him to retire safely. And I realize, retiring safely as a football player is very much a spectrum. So that’s why I would like Peyton Manning retire happily, because I do not want to see what I think is going to happen if he goes for another year.”

Oliver — who last year told Letterman he considered the Super Bowl to represent “peak America” and that not watching it would get him deported — continued explaining why he’s in the tank for Manning’s Denver Broncos to beat Cam Newton’s Carolina Panthers. “I think he absolutely deserves to win the Super Bowl and walk — with a limp — off the field,” he said of the 39-year-old quarterback. “And I realize that’s a pretty sad way to end things. [Laughs]. My best-case scenario is a dignified Peyton Manning, with his future knee problems ahead of him.”

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The comedian then offered some actual NFL-worthy in-game analysis. “I would definitely like Peyton Manning to not have the first snap fly over his head like it did last time,” Oliver said, referring to the Broncos’ bruising loss to the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVII. “Anything beyond that, I’ll be looking for the first snap going into his hands, and then his hands throwing the ball into another person’s hands, without it being an interception.”

Concluded Oliver, “So, dignity. Always dignity.”

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Last Week Tonight With John Oliver

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