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Peyton Manning has the power to soften Colts’ contract dilemma

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After hearing ESPN’s Chris Mortensen summarize the latest news regarding Colts quarterback Peyton Manning, there’s an overriding point that needs to be remembered whenever considering the decision that the Colts eventually need to make regarding whether to keep Peyton and pay him $28 million on early March 2012, or whether to trade/cut him and owe Manning nothing.

Manning has the ability to soften the dilemma by delaying the deadline for the payment of the option bonus.

The money currently is due in on the fourth day of the 2012 league year.  Manning could offer to bump the trigger to April or May or June or July or however long it takes for him to get as close to 100 percent as he’s ever going to get after three neck surgeries in 19 months.

For now, Mort explains that Manning has regained some strength in his chest, but that his biceps and triceps still haven’t fully responded.  Mort also reports that Manning has been told not to throw yet because doing so could cause elbow and/or rotator cuff injuries.

And so the Colts continue to inch toward the date on which they have to decide whether to plunk down another $28 million, to go along with a $20 million signing bonus (paid without Manning having to pass a physical) and other compensation totaling $6.4 million for 2011.  The Colts now have to ask themselves whether they’ll be throwing $28 million in good money after $26.4 million in bad.

To make the best decision, the Colts need the one thing that Manning can give them:  Time.

So even if, as Manning recently said, his current contract was structured to protect the Colts by making it a one-year deal with a four-year option, circumstances could end up putting the screws to the Colts, and Peyton has the power to loosen them long enough for Jim Irsay and company to make a prudent and informed decision.

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37 Responses to “Peyton Manning has the power to soften Colts’ contract dilemma”
  1. pooflingingmonkey says: Nov 6, 2011 11:10 AM

    At what point do you tell a legend that his time is up?

  2. The Prophet says: Nov 6, 2011 11:14 AM

    Interesting dilemma. Considering the amount of megamillions Peyton has been paid and would be paid to potentially do nothing or play with the arm strength of a ten year old, I think if the Colts can get the #1 pick, they should just save the money and cut Peyton.

    Yeah, its a risk that he might play well enough and want to join the Jags or Titans, but I think its worth the risk. I know Peyton is entrenched in Colts lore and all, but we’re talking about almost $50 million given to someone who hasn’t played and might not play a down ever again.

  3. billinva says: Nov 6, 2011 11:16 AM

    But will he? Because I’m not convinced he will.

  4. olsonm4 says: Nov 6, 2011 11:18 AM

    I don’t agree with the” 26.4 million for bad “comment. Don’t forget that the Colts had already tagged Manning and the extension reduced their cap number for 2011. Even if Manning never plays again, this extension was a good move for the Colts.

  5. trbowman says: Nov 6, 2011 11:20 AM

    To even talk about an unproven prospect like Luck in the same breath as one of the best ever in Manning is an insult.

  6. skoobyfl says: Nov 6, 2011 11:24 AM

    If the Colts get the first pick of 2012 and get Luck, then it’s time to trade the legend. He still might not be able to pass a physical, then I think he’d be cut.

    ~$50 M is expensive for memories versus performance.

  7. contract says: Nov 6, 2011 11:41 AM

    Why should Manning do that? Pushing the date back will only increase the odds that Manning will never see that money. If the Colts do release him, plenty of teams will line up to give him an even bigger contract if he can throw the football at all.

    Manning doesn’t owe the Colts a thing.

  8. tubal22 says: Nov 6, 2011 11:43 AM

    trbowman says:
    Nov 6, 2011 11:20 AM
    To even talk about an unproven prospect like Luck in the same breath as one of the best ever in Manning is an insult.
    —————–

    I think it’s safe to say that Luck is better than Manning is right now, and possibly ever will be again.

  9. richm2256 says: Nov 6, 2011 11:47 AM

    The longer this goes on, the more incompetent the Colts look for this contract. They knew he was injured. They knew this wouldn’t be his first neck surgery. Yet they STILL signed this mega-deal without even giving him a physical?

    We’re all going to find out just how loyal Peyton Manning is when this deadline comes to pass….. will he make this (financially) easier for the Colts to avoid paying millions of dollars to a guy who can’t do the job anymore, or will he stick to his deal and force them to pay him?

    If it’s the latter, Manning is going to find out how much a broken down legend is worth on the open market, and it sure won’t be 28 million. As a football fan, my hope is that Manning recovers fully and goes out and earns that 28 mil, or that he realizes he’s all done, and retires.

    They just paid him 26.4 million this year to have surgery and watch TV, he has no moral right to ask another dime from them. To expect a team to pay you 54.4 million in two years for not playing one down of football is ridiculous.

  10. croghan1919 says: Nov 6, 2011 11:49 AM

    Hopefully rational thinking will prevail when the time comes to make THE decision but with C. Polian calling more of the shots these days I have serious doubts that it WILL BE rational.
    See Sundays (11/6) Kravitz column in the Indy Star.

  11. steelersownyou says: Nov 6, 2011 11:52 AM

    I would let manning go. An injury like he has, even if he came back how effective will he be? Will 1 good hit end him forever even if he comes back? In this business sometimes harsh decisiins need to be mafe for the good of the organization. Im a steelers fan, and can appreciate great talent. Nobody has meant more to his team than manning. Sometimes its hard to say goodbye, but in the end it is necessary.

  12. robigd says: Nov 6, 2011 11:57 AM

    The way I see it, Manning has already earned this contract, even if he isn’t playing.

    He put this garbage franchise on the map, and will take them off the map just as easily.

  13. das14 says: Nov 6, 2011 11:58 AM

    Everything about this makes me nervous. I hope it all just goes away and Manning gets better.

  14. Soulman45 says: Nov 6, 2011 11:59 AM

    It might be time for Payton to go drafting in the top 5 a good QB will be their.
    The team can save a lot of money with cutting him.
    The Detroit Lions have the up and cumming QB in the NFL.

  15. whitecastleisafoodgroup says: Nov 6, 2011 12:03 PM

    pooflingingmonkey says: “At what point do you tell a legend that his time is up?”

    Answer: When you have the first overall pick and you draft a QB.

  16. dsfrantz says: Nov 6, 2011 12:04 PM

    It amazes me how few people understand Colts culture…

    There’s no way Irsay will cut Peyton. He put that team on the map. He’s made far more money for Indianapolis than they’ve paid him, so Irsay would pay him to sit in a wheelchair just out of appreciation for what he’s done. Thing is Indy fans would support that. We may not be the most tactical team in the world, and we’re loyal to a fault when it comes to our players, but that’s just how Colts nation is and it’s righteous.

  17. ticalcaldwell says: Nov 6, 2011 12:06 PM

    There is no one on this planet that thinks the Colts are going to pass up Luck……They are just saying this now to make it easier dealing with Peyton on a daily basis….Come on….They are about 2-3 years behind on developing Manning’s replacement as it is…………………..

  18. goawayeverybody says: Nov 6, 2011 12:07 PM

    Time to let go, Peyton.

  19. numberonesteelersfan says: Nov 6, 2011 12:15 PM

    the new brett favre

  20. granadafan says: Nov 6, 2011 12:16 PM

    Peyton really screwed the Colts by signing that massive contract knowing full well his injuries were serious. He’s done wonders for a hick town like Indianapolis and the Colts, but he’s really done the TEAM a disservice with his ego. He runs the practices and doesn’t listen to the coaches. The back up QBs NEVER had any snaps with the 1st team offenses and Peyton wouldn’t even come out in games to give the backups any game time. As you can see, his back up QB is woefully unprepared.

  21. benh999 says: Nov 6, 2011 12:17 PM

    Not even a goober like Manning would be dumb enough to do that.

  22. eagleswin says: Nov 6, 2011 12:18 PM

    olsonm4 says:
    Nov 6, 2011 11:18 AM
    I don’t agree with the” 26.4 million for bad “comment. Don’t forget that the Colts had already tagged Manning and the extension reduced their cap number for 2011. Even if Manning never plays again, this extension was a good move for the Colts.

    —————————————–

    Being that Manning never passed a physical, how do you figure? He still would’ve had to pass a physical to sign his franchise tender. He wouldn’t have passed, wouldn’t have counted against the cap, and the team would’ve saved the 28 or so million they paid him to rehabilite from an injury that happened prior to his signing the last contract.

  23. presidentjesus says: Nov 6, 2011 12:21 PM

    The Colts need to put in a call to Ted Thompson.

  24. pastabelly says: Nov 6, 2011 12:32 PM

    Manning is no fool and won’t restructure to put himself in a worse off position than he’s in today.

  25. johnnyshore says: Nov 6, 2011 12:38 PM

    The Colts and Manning signed the contract. Far too often, teams are willing to screw players who have signed bad contracts by forcing them to play for a minimal salary, (Forte). In this instance, Manning has no obligation to help the Colts, and if they are ready to move on without him, they should.

  26. scomibord says: Nov 6, 2011 12:42 PM

    and we’re loyal to a fault when it comes to our players, but that’s just how Colts nation is and it’s righteous.

    I wonder how marvin harrison would feel about this statement.

  27. earthtopft says: Nov 6, 2011 12:55 PM

    When the full time care attendant lifted Payment’s head from where it had flopped forward onto his chest, to get a comment, he said “Gaaaagghsshpltt uuuussttaahhh”. Or something like that.

  28. usmutts says: Nov 6, 2011 12:58 PM

    I don’t understand why anyone would suggest that the Colts cut Manning if they’re able to get Andrew Luck. Luck is just a prospect who’s never played a down in the NFL. The “experts” who are saying he “can’t miss,” the “best prospect since John Elway,” etc, are the exact same experts who said Cam Newton would never be able to play in the NFL. So much for “experts.” Sometimes they’re right, sometimes they’re wrong.

    I like Luck fine. I would think that if the Colts get a chance to draft him they will do so. And that Manning would renegotiate his own contract so that he can continue to play and tutor Luck.

  29. badtimeoutcaldwell says: Nov 6, 2011 1:00 PM

    Manning wont want to push the date back because he would want to be a free agent BEFORE the April Draft. That way teams can make the necessary moves with their QBs and draft choices and Manning can land in the right spot…

  30. randomguy9999 says: Nov 6, 2011 1:07 PM

    he’s got a potentially career ending injury going on…

    and the Colts bent over, dropped their pants, and didn’t use a condom in one of the dumbest moves in NFL history…

    and now Peyton is looking at getting $50+M without ever having to take another snap again if he simply feels like he wants to retire next season….

    he won’t move that payday one minute… guaranteed

  31. hopshark says: Nov 6, 2011 1:52 PM

    I hope Peyton packs up and moves out in the middle of the night, taking his trophies and records with him.

  32. pastabelly says: Nov 6, 2011 1:54 PM

    usmutts says:Nov 6, 2011 12:58 PM

    I don’t understand why anyone would suggest that the Colts cut Manning if they’re able to get Andrew Luck. Luck is just a prospect who’s never played a down in the NFL. The “experts” who are saying he “can’t miss,” the “best prospect since John Elway,” etc, are the exact same experts who said Cam Newton would never be able to play in the NFL. So much for “experts.” Sometimes they’re right, sometimes they’re wrong.

    I like Luck fine. I would think that if the Colts get a chance to draft him they will do so. And that Manning would renegotiate his own contract so that he can continue to play and tutor Luck.
    ================================

    You are pretty naive. Andrew Luck and is not going to come out and sit on anyone’s bench for 2-3 years and Manning has no obligation to “tutor” his own replacement. Even if both players were willing to do as you say, it is absolutely nonsensical for the Colts to tie up close to $30 million in salary cap space at the QB position for 2-3 years.

    As I type this, the Dolphins are up 14-3 and the Colts are playing true to suck for Luck. Luck won’t sign with the Colts unless they dump Manning. He can sit out a year and go back in the draft in 2013.

  33. tedmurph says: Nov 6, 2011 1:54 PM

    I would let him go. Judging by what that team looks like this year, they have to start all over. I don’t think Manning can come back and win anything with that team. Why pay him. They should draft a QB, get some picks for Manning and start from scratch. They don’t have to worry about loyalty to Manning. If he’s healthy, someone will pay him.

  34. tominma says: Nov 6, 2011 3:50 PM

    Peyton Manning has the chance to secure his legacy in the NFL and for the Colts. All he has to do is retire and not take the money. NOBODY could be unhappy with that decision! He has been GREAT for the Colts and the NFL and they have been great for him! Do the classy thing Peyton. You dont need the money!! Attempting to keep it will only cause controvery and sully the reputation of a true legend! Johnny Unitas stayed too long. Dont do the same!

  35. 1historian says: Nov 7, 2011 7:02 AM

    FYI – I am a fan of the BALTIMORE COLTS.

    Manning doesn’t owe the colts a thing. If irsay was dumb enough to give him the contract he gave him that’s irsay’s problem.

    It’s a young man’s game and Manning is not a young man anymore. IMO if he comes back, which I hope he doesn’t, he is one good big hit away from a wheelchair.

    I wish he would just walk away because I would hate to see him sitting in a wheelchair when he gives his HOF acceptance speech.

  36. 1historian says: Nov 7, 2011 7:27 AM

    To me there is nothing as sad as watching players who were once great hang on for a few extra years. I was going to list some of them but no purpose would be served by that. Thye

  37. 1historian says: Nov 7, 2011 7:29 AM

    The ONLY one I can remember who went out on top was Jim Brown.

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