But put that aside for a moment. Let's take a look at Manning's history. Since coming into the league, Peyton Manning has led his team to the playoffs 11 times. During that ran, he had the luxury of playing with some tremendously talented players in the passing game, most notably Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark. In those 11 trips, 7 ended in first round losses. Of the other four, only two resulted in Super Bowl appearances and only one of those was a victory. This is not opinion. These are verifiable facts in black and white. This is what happened. To add a little opinion to those facts, two Super Bowl appearances and one victory is kind of a poor showing for a player many want to tout as the Greatest Of All Time.
There is no doubt that Peyton Manning over the course of his career has been one of the best QBs of his generation and maybe the most talented pure passer ever. I don't think anyone would dispute that. But even the best players eventually lose a step. The best player does not remain the best forever. Eventually they fade. This takes nothing from what they accomplished before, but it limits what they can accomplish moving forward. If Manning has not hit that point yet, he soon will.
Now, it has been established that Manning in his prime routinely took teams to the playoffs and lost in the first round. What I want to know is, what about that changes if he comes to Denver? Manning is no longer in his physical prime. At age 36, no one is in their physical prime. That is in the past. Does anyone really think that Decker and DT are any match for Harrison and Wayne in their primes? Maybe someday they will be, but they are no where close to it yet. So please explain to me how Manning succeeds in Denver with less to work with in terms of talent around him and the very real likelihood that his physical skills are going to begin to deteriorate if they have not already.
There is one other issue that no one seems to want to talk about: Manning in an outdoor stadium verses a dome. Over the course of his career, Manning has shown that he is not the same player outside as he is in a dome. In case you haven't noticed people SAF is not a dome. Not a roof to be seen. Open to the elements. So when Manning in his prime looks like a mortal in an open stadium, how, at the age of 36, does he remain a dominant player when his home stadium is now open?
The bottom line for me is this. Peyton Manning was consistently unable to get his teams past the first round of the playoffs when at his peak physically and surrounded by better offensive play makers than the Broncos now posses. What I want is for someone, anyone to please tell me how we can expect anything better from him here. What about our situation is so much better than what he had before that we are suddenly going to contend for Super Bowls? Why should I be excited about a move that will mean low first round draft picks and limited cap space moving forward? Shouldn't this make me nervous about the team's future? You tell me.