All this was probably inevitable. Peyton Manning was a free agent the minute the Colts took a nice lead on on the Luck Sweepstakes this past season and even though they almost found a way out they still got that number one pick.
Business decision… easy. Manning was the face of the Colts but with only 1 championship in 14 years and that new car smell long forgotten all that was left was an expensive old car. Classic? Surely, but they had a simple choice trade in the classic, it might be able to keep on the road for a good three or so years or you can drive the brand new Ferrari out right now. No guarantee that Ferrari offer will be there in a few years they jumped on it. Good move, it might look bad if that classic out does their Ferrari for the next few years but, who could laugh in four or five years when the classic isn't running and that Ferrari is a beast? Even if it's not the classic in it's prime, that just wasn't an option.
That said, I couldn't care less about the Colts. Denver is where I like to keep my focus and like a whole lot of people in Denver, really around the world, I loves me some Tebow! Tim Tebow is without a doubt in my mind the right choice for the Broncos, longterm. Peyton Manning is a player I have hated for many years, this exact moment is what many who know me had pondered for many years… Would I like Peyton Manning if he were a Bronco and honestly the answer is… no. I don't like Peyton Manning, I simply respect him, I respect what he does on the field and I hate him for it. Would I love to see him play for us? No question, the guy is a field general, really he's very much like Tim Tebow. WHAT?! Yes Peyton Manning is perhaps the only QB in the NFL right now that has that field vision that Tim Tebow has used to bring us alive, Tim uses it along with his build and athletic ability to make those amazing runs and Peyton uses it along with his confidence and accuracy. Tim can be the future in Denver because the biggest difference between him and Manning is his athletic ability and Manning's confidence and accuracy. Tebow couldn't teach Manning a thing, Manning will never be able to do what Tebow can but Tebow can learn what he lacks of Peyton's game and I hope he's given that opportunity if Manning is acquired.
Now that we are less sure that this decision will be made ANY minute. I'd like to take a second after the jump to look ahead of and even behind us. So what the heck will 2012 hold for us?
Like I said, couldn't really care less about the Colts but they have been a part of Denver ever since they drafted John Elway. The Colts didn't really recover from that until they drafted Peyton Manning to replace their then starter Jim Harbaugh. Jim Harbaugh would then coach at Stanford, the place Elway played in college. Heck Peyton's brother Eli pulled a page out of Elway's draft day guide and forced the Charger's to trade him. Elway came in as Vice President of Football Operations and tried to bring in Harbaugh to be our coach. San Francisco stepped in and took Harbaugh and Elway got John Fox to coach Denver. Manning spends a year out while Tebow spends nearly a whole season on the field. The Colts find themselves in the Luck Sweepstakes surprisingly while Tebow surprises Elway by knocking the Broncos out of it. So Manning get's replaced by the kid who was coached by the guy he replaced. This all of course brings us to today. Manning's suitors all have great stories for his possible signing. In Tennessee, it's the Volunteer homecoming and a chance to get at the Colts. In San Francisco it's the reverse Montana, more interesting though is that Peyton would be playing for the guy he replaced 14 years ago as a player and that same guy coached his replacement in Indianapolis. Denver? Denver gets the future Hall of Fame QB from the Colts AGAIN!
What would signing Manning mean to each team? Well the first thing that you'll have to understand is that all these teams see Manning as a quick Superbowl shot, they all likely believe Manning WILL bring them the title. Will it? Really? It could, but I think that Tennessee would be a hard place for him to pull it off, they have the Texans twice and they aren't currently equipped enough for Manning to be the answer. The Niners? Sure, I'd have them as heavy favorites to win the Super Bowl with Manning on board. Denver? I am going on record, I believe Manning would win at least one maybe 2 or 3 with Denver. I'm not saying that he should sign with us, if I were Manning I'd sign with the Niners, they are the most advantageous spot for him.
What's the harm? This is my favorite part, Denver is clearly at an advantage here. The Titans are risking alienating their QBs who they are already pretty highly invested in. The Niners potentially will be left without a starting quality option with Alex Smith being a free agent and reportedly testing the market. The Niners are playing high risk, high reward and they'll come out of this with a season lost or a Lombardi trophy practically bought. Denver is in such a good situation, they've seen the bad side recently, with Cutler but think about it, Denver believes (as do I) they are buying a Superbowl win or two. If they fail? No harm done, the opposite actually, Tebow won't even begin to question his contract, he will get over it or he'll burn it. Fuel for his fire, Tim Tebow probably never even thinks about Elway's decisions. I'm not a religious person but I know some. I believe Tebow takes any obstacle as a challenge from God. When I first heard we were front runners for Manning my first thought was, Tebow must be wondering how many tests God still has for him. I seriously picture Tim finding out then looking up and saying, "Wow! That's a good one, I'll just have to try harder for you."
I know it's naive to think of a player in that light, that he won't get his feeling's hurt, that they could be that humble. I know. The world isn't a Frank Capra movie, and players just aren't James Stewart. People just aren't that good. I know all that, but I also know Tim Tebow isn't like all players/people. Tim Tebow might be a self contained Capra movie. The only loss Denver can come out of this with is if they decide to get rid of Tebow. I honestly think the truth is that cutting a guy like Tebow is never going to be a right move. Tebow, is valuable beyond football, he's one of a kind in more ways than I've ever seen in a grown man.
So what the heck will 2012 hold for us? Denver Bronco fans? Tebowmaniacs? I for one will be bleeding Orange and Blue for sure but I hope we'll be on the same path. Manning or not. Tebow or not. I am a Broncos fan but I'll take this one perhaps final opportunity to lay my heart out. Tim Tebow is and may always be the greatest man to ever wear a Bronco jersey. While his NFL career may not be a whole lot to look at so far, he has shown who he is on and off the field, he has taken the world by storm and he's never once let down all those who look up to him, his character is flawless. So I don't care if you are a Tebow fan or not, I don't care if you are a Broncos fan or a football fan (although I assume if you read this you probably are) Tim Tebow deserves your respect and admiration. More than most.