I know I've said numerous times that I was done talking about Manning until he made a decision... but I had a dream last night that I can't help but share. I see it as a dire warning to our franchise and something that could haunt us for decades to come.
Maybe this all has to do with me being a Chicago Cubs fan, but as an atheist I've always retained a strong notion of karma. Like religion, karma is something that can and will never be proved. But since I don't believe in an afterlife, the idea that people will get what's coming to them always seems to comfort me. Of course, if you step back and actually look at how great some of the world's biggest a-holes are, you know that it's not real. But, why take away the fun of imagining a just world. But, without further adieu, on to my dream... or actually more of a nightmare to be honest.
The nightmare was more like me watching a movie... I was there but no one could see, touch or talk to me. Very Harry Potteresque for my fellow Hogwarts nerds. It started off with the ghost of the past taking John Elway to the 1945 World Series. Mr. Elway was bewildered by this and started demanding to know why he was standing outside of Wrigley Field more than 30 years before he played when he chose football over baseball. The ghost slowly shushed him and pointed to the gate. As he watched, a man was being esquarted off the premises with a billy goat in hand. He was arguing with the ushers that he had paid for two tickets and that he and his goat should be allowed to attend. As they closed the doors on him, the angry fan went home and wrote a telegram to the Cubs' owner letting him know that what had happened to him was unjust and for treating their fans wrongly, they will never again win a world series. As Elway looked on at the fan, the ghost of the present appeared and took him away.
Elway was actually excited for this ghost. The present contained his biggest move as the Broncos' top exec. The very night before, he had wined and dined Peyton Manning and left him extremely impressed. This was a memory that he couldn't wait to relive. Instead though, he was taken to the home of Tim Tebow. Tebow had playbooks scattered around him as he was watching film after film. His arm was being iced from all the work he had put himself through in the afternoon and his focus was as determined as anything that Elway had ever seen. As he looked on, finally starting to understand how deep his quarterbacks passion actually went, Tebow's phone rang. "Yes, sir." "Jacksonville, sir?" "I guess this means you got Manning. I'm sorry to hear that I can't play for you any longer sir, and I wish you and your team all the best." With that he put the phone done and Elway's heart broke just a little bit. But before he could react, the ghost of the present changed scenery. He suddenly found himself in the home of ordinary Broncos' fans. Three children were playing on the rug in front of the TV, as their parents sat on the couch watching ESPN. Suddenly the news came across the screen and the children started crying. They had witnessed magic and seen a man do everything the right way on and off the field. He gave it his all, so why did Denver have to ship him out. The man, wearing a Tebow jersey, looked at his wife in anger and told her he needed to go write a letter. With that, he sat down and penned out a simple short note to Mr. Pat Bowlen informing him that he was tired of switching allegiances to quarterbacks, and that even though he could understand most of them until now, this one was unjust and for treating Tim Tebow and Broncos' fans this way, the Broncos will never again win a Super Bowl.
WIth that, Elway gasped and looked toward the ghost of the present... but he was gone. Instead there was the ghost of the future who sat him down in front of a TV as it whirled through the future decades of Broncos' suffering. The Manning debacle failed as Tebow went on to find great success. Quarterback after quarterback was replaced on the team as no one could ever fill the shoes of being our next franchise guy. Whenever we got big name stars on our team, they were hurt... On the rare occasions we did make the playoffs, we were blown out in huge upsets. Elway saw himself fired from his executive position, mocked out of his position by a city that once adored him. After a century had passed, the franchise still had only two trophies to show for its efforts. Elway was devastated...
I woke up before I had the chance for this dream to improve. I would hope Elway would have realized the errors of his ways, called Manning and told him we changed our minds and then called Tebow to apologize. Yeah, that would have been a total dream, huh?
My point with sharing this with you has nothing to do with how I think our future will be though. I could see us finding success with Manning or even 5 or 10 years after him the proper way (with a guy we've groomed on our own). The real point of sharing this with you is that if the Broncos do go on a major losing streak, which is always a very scary possibility, it won't take much for people to come up with the legend of the Tebow curse, especially if he would succeed. And in my mind, whenever someone has a reason to believe you've been cursed, you've probably done something wrong enough that karma would have a reason to. Shipping out a young role model who is so focused and dedicated to the game on and off the field who always seems to do and say the right thing might just be enough to cause one.