The Denver Broncos are in the midst of some Peyton Manning / Brock Osweiler / travel itinerary controversy, and the boiling point seems to have been reached (one would hope) after Gary Kubiak announced that Manning and DeMarcus Ware won't fly with the team to face the Chicago Bears this week.
According to the conspiracy theories, this means the Broncos and Manning are at an impasse. Taking it a natural step further: Manning is not supportive of Osweiler (as a good team leader should be) and is more concerned about his own well-being than the team's success.
Interestingly, with the exact same input, some make conclusions in another direction: as a criticism of the Broncos and John Elway. Manning was set up to fail in Denver, and this is the latest evidence to suggest that the Broncos are trying to push Manning out the door.
I don't prescribe to either theory and think this is vastly overblown. Let's all remind ourselves of one thing:
Peyton Manning getting healthy is still Plan A
There has been a lot of talk about the end of the Manning era this week, and understandably so. There's no timetable for Manning's return, and there are two months left in the regular season.
Still, any and all reports and articles about Manning not starting again are inherently speculative, including ours. Peyton Manning "could be" done as starting QB does not mean Peyton Manning "is" done as starting QB. So if the Broncos want Peyton Manning to be healthy, it makes sense that Kubiak and Broncos trainer Steve "Greek" Antonopulus would decide that maximizing Manning's ability to rest is a higher priority than attending team meetings. His injury is one, after all, that requires you to relax the foot as much as possible.
So the Broncos asked Manning to put 100% focus into his rehabilitation. He was away from the team for most of this week (although he and Kubiak met on-field on Friday, according to Kubiak), as Manning was resting, as he was told.
The simplest answer is usually the correct one. The Broncos are resting Manning, and Manning is maximizing his rest, as they both aim for the mutual goal: the team's success before and once Manning is healthy.
I'm curious to hear your take, though. Hit the poll and the comments and let me know where you sit among the varied opinions of Broncos Country regarding Manning's absence among his teammates this week.