The decision has finally been made. There was no big television program to announce the decision. No charity benefit to immortalize the decision for years to come. Peyton Manning told the media and the media did the rest. Peyton Manning is going to sign with the Denver Broncos, after a little under two weeks of pondering. This weekend, Manning had narrowed it down to three teams, the San Francisco 49ers, The Tennessee Titans and the Denver Broncos.
Today, Peyton Manning only has one team that is on his mind and I will do my best to deliver why Peyton Manning chose the Denver Broncos over the other two NFL team options. I believe I have a good grasp on why a quarterback of Peyton Manning’s caliber would choose the least attractive option.
First, let us look at the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers seem to have it all. The San Francisco 49ers have a championship defense, a great running game lead by Frank Gore, a coach who loves to develop quarterbacks, and the team just signed recievers Randy Moss and Mario Manningham. Sounds like the San Francisco 49ers would have been a great place for Peyton Manning to go to right? The 49ers are a wonderful team and I have little doubt Peyton Manning could win a Super Bowl there.
One big issue with the San Francisco 49ers though that most people do not think about. Eli Manning plays in the NFC and I believe that Peyton Manning truly does not want to play in same conference as his brother. If I had a brother and we both played in the NFL I would also want to play in different conferences so there is a chance me and my brother could meet in the Super Bowl. The desire could be the same for the two Manning brothers and that could be one major reason neither wanted to play in the same NFL conference as the other brother. For this reason alone I believe it did not take Peyton Manning long to decide San Francisco would not be his new home.
Secondly, we can look at the Tennessee Titans. The Titans have one of the best running backs in the league in Chris Johnson, a go to receiver in Kenny Britt and a defense that was once the top-rated defense in the league last year. Add Peyton Manning and the Tennessee Titans could be a true force to be reckoned with. In addition, Peyton Manning played his college careeer as a Volunteer at the University of Tennessee. Manning never was able to win a NCAA Championship but Peyton Manning is still one of the most beloved figures in the state of Tennessee. If Peyton Manning had chosen the Titans as his home, there would be no shortage of NFL Fan or even just Tennessee Volunteer love for him.
The familiarity and the dedicated fan base may have been the reason that Peyton Manning decided not to go toTennessee. Peyton Manning seems like the kind of person that likes to prove himself. In Tennessee there is nothing to prove, people will automatically adore Manning wherever he decided to show up. That can be great for some people but to others it is not something that they desire.
This leaves the Denver Broncos and why Peyton Manning chose this specific team. The Denver Broncos have a good running game, a very good defense, and some average receivers. All these things aside, one major component had to influence Peyton Manning’s decision and that is John Elway. John Elway and Peyton Manning’s stories are similar in many different facets. Peyton Manning is trying to accomplish similar to what Elway accomplished at this point in his career. Peyton Manning has made it clear he wants to win another Super Bowl or even two. John Elway has painted the picture that with Peyton Manning, the Denver Broncos will have an opportunity to accomplish that feat.
Moreover, The Denver Broncos believe that Peyton Manning can be their savior and have signed Manning to a 5-year 96 million dollar contract. With that kind of money invested in Peyton Manning, everyone knew Tebow Time would no longer be a Denver phenomenon. The New York Jets decided to give Tim Tebow a new home as big as his fan base. The Jets have committed to Mark Sanchez but if Sanchez does struggle Tebow might be called on to take over the starting position.
The courting of Peyton Manning is over. No one will know if Peyton Manning can truly deliver until He takes the field. We will not even know if Peyton Manning can take a hit until he does. We can still only try to make a prediction that Peyton Manning will be the Manning of old we know and love. If it is determined that Manning cannot play after all the hype, will the Denver Broncos be able to recover. The answer is invariably no. The Broncos better hope that Peyton Manning can overcome the odds; they are truly stacked against the new, “Golden Boy” of Denver.