Today, the agent for Peyton Manning was instructed to open negotiations with the Denver Broncos for the purpose of signing the quarterback to a multi-year deal that could be worth $60 million dollars. On the surface, John Elway, the general manager of the Broncos looks like a genius here. Manning is a lock for the NFL Hall of Fame. He is known for bringing his former team, the Indianapolis Colts, to nine straight playoff appearances and a Super Bowl victory. He is an 11-time Pro Bowler and has won the MVP award four times. Denver is incredibly blessed to have this champion except for the elephant in the living room. A very BIG elephant.
Four surgeries for nerve damage in Peyton Manning’s neck causing him to lose power in his throwing arm. That is one, humongous pachyderm. Sitting right there in the living room of the Denver Bronco Super Bowl war room. Uh, has anyone noticed the elephant here?
The Indianapolis Colts sure noticed. They let Manning go for that reason. Of all the teams in the NFL they were the one franchise that had the inside scoop on this guy’s health. You think they would have sent him packing had he been healthy enough to play? They know the truth even though everyone else seems to have their head in the sand.
ESPN has been blathering all morning about the grandiose coup orchestrated by the Bronco powers that are fully convinced Peyton has passed a physical and is ready to lead them to the Promised Land.
He passed a physical?
That and $1.50 will buy you a cup of coffee at my favorite diner.
What will happen when Manning takes his first hit in an NFL game? Will he pass that, too? How many healthy quarterbacks sat out this past year with injuries that limited their playing time?
Let me help you remember, Brady, Romo, Rothlisberger, Sanchez, Dalton, Palmer, Yates, Cutler, Hasselback, Freeman and Grossman. A significant exception here is Tim Tebow, the man Denver is shopping around once Manning inks the contract. I would not move rashly here, Bronco boys. I would keep Timmy around just in case that elephant makes its move on vicious blitz to Manning’s upper body.
I hope I am wrong here.
Peyton Manning wants to play so badly and his credentials tell us he could lead Denver to not only the playoffs but to a Super Bowl. But, having a passion to keep playing may be trumped by a serious neck injury that may not even hold up past the pre-season. This is a damaged goods kind of guy and no one seems to be talking about on television right now since he, ahem, passed his physical.
Passing a physical is great if you are a CPA or a plumber. But, passing a physical in the NFL is only as good as the next snap from center. One hit. One tackle. One pop…and the word, “retirement” spills out of his mouth faster than a Charles Manson parole hearing.
I hope Peyton does not suffer a permanent injury because he wants to keep playing. I hope this story has a good ending. I guess there is only one way to find out here.
Because today, everyone is ignoring that big, ole Elephant.
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