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Clock ticking for Colts, Manning

alarm-clock440 Getty Images

It’s finally March 1.  (I spent half of Wednesday thinking it was March 1.  OK, all of Wednesday.)  In only one week, the Colts must pay quarterback Peyton Manning a fresh $28 million (to go along with the $26 million he received for doing nothing in 2011) or cut him.

At this point, the chances of the Colts paying Manning the $28 million are even lower than the chances of the Colts winning the next Super Bowl.  Especially since the Collective Bargaining Agreement supposedly forbids the Colts from watching Peyton throw — live or on tape — before making their decision.

But I’ve checked the CBA.  There’s no “thou shalt not” language on that specific topic.  If the Colts wanted to watch Manning throw (and as Peter King mentioned on Monday’s PFT Live former Vice Chairman Bill Polian was under the impression that the Colts could watch Manning throw), they would watch him throw.  Sure, there’s a chance someone would have said that the labor deal implies that such activities are frowned upon in this establishment, but when faced with a $28 million dilemma, the cost of a team getting its knuckles rapped for a no-harm technical violation of the CBA is far lower than the cost of paying $28 million to a guy who ends up having the arm strength of a pre-op Steve Austin.

The more likely explanation is that the Colts don’t want to watch Manning throw.  Then, when the folks in Indy break out the torches and the pitchforks, owner Jim Irsay can post a tweet or two explaining, in vaguely decipherable English, that he can’t be expected to give $28 million to a player that his coaching staff and front office can’t watch throw a football following a quartet of neck procedures.

Look for Irsay to also invite Manning, once he’s a free agent, to come show the team he can throw, which the CBA and any applicable league rules permit.  And look for Irsay to suggest that the Colts would be willing to pay Manning as much as any other team will pay him, once the team has a chance to inspect his ability to throw the ball.

Then, if/when (when) Peyton passes on the opportunity to pass for the Colts, Irsay can make one last return to Twitter and declare that Peyton isn’t a Colt not because the Colts didn’t want Peyton but because Peyton didn’t want the Colts.

The truth, of course, is both.  The Colts want to move on, and Manning wants to move on.  The sooner it happens, the sooner we can get on to the much bigger question of where Manning will play, if anywhere, in 2012.

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23 Responses to “Clock ticking for Colts, Manning”
  1. raven410 says: Mar 1, 2012 9:35 AM

    Clock isn’t ticking fast enough.

  2. vaughnorange says: Mar 1, 2012 9:39 AM

    Miami bound

  3. drshakedown74 says: Mar 1, 2012 9:39 AM

    I like the Eagles.

  4. lonespeed says: Mar 1, 2012 9:48 AM

    To me the Colts and Peyton Manning are just another part of the NFL, and I don’t have any emotional connection to either side.

    However, Jim Irsey has really rubbed me wrong over the past couple months. Should the Colts part way with Manning? I think it is somewhere between maybe and probably. It’s hard for anyone to say without having seen him work out recently.

    However, that being said. Irsey has approached it along the same lines as other arrogant owners like Dan Snyder and Jerry Jones. No owner should be so narcissistic to tweet about anything, but especially about internal labor issues.

    I could care less about how good the Colts are this year, next year, or ten years from now. But I do hope Irsey gets put into his place when all this goes down.

    I don’t want to root against Andrew Luck because he seems like a good kid, but I don’t think he’s the sure thing everyone portrays him to be. No NFL quarterback prospect is a sure thing.

    Irsey better hope Luck pans out to be as good as advertised. That kid is going to have some big expectations to live up to. Anything shy of a Super Bowl appearance in three-to-four years is going to be seen as failure.

    I don’t care how good you are, that’s awfully tall odds. There are already some pretty good quarterbacks in the league that will have something to say about the odds of that happening.

  5. vetdana says: Mar 1, 2012 9:53 AM

    This story has been hot on the hot burner for many months & finally comes to an end ![for the Colts]The Colts are smart enough to know they don’t have to pay Manning twenty eight million now to keep him.No other team is going to pay him a kings ransom until they know if he can still throw.Insiders are saying, on different blogs, that he cannot throw twenty yards because of the muscle atrophy that would be expected after so long of a period of inactivity.The medical experts are not all in agreement on the extent of nerve regeneration that has taken place.Its far to early for someone to throw millions at Peyton… or they could be just flushing it down the toilet !I think he should not risk a possible paralyzing injury, retire and go to television broadcasting.

  6. steelbydesign says: Mar 1, 2012 9:53 AM

    I have a question, particularly for Colts fan… Does anyone really care who “wins” in this situation or who “doesn’t want” the other?

    I think it’s a pretty simple situation.
    - Peyton only has a couple years left at best and would like to try and get back to a Super Bowl (which isn’t going to happen in Indy).

    - The Colts are about to take their QB of the future and are in rebuilding mode, and it wouldn’t make sense at all financially to keep Peyton.

    Releasing him in a win-win for Peyton and the Colts. Why can’t they both just say it’s been good, but this is better for both of us now. Thanks for the memories and good luck.

    ??????????

  7. mrbigass says: Mar 1, 2012 9:53 AM

    Surely this decision has already been made. Why wait?

  8. Spencer says: Mar 1, 2012 9:58 AM

    End the misery.

  9. mcjon22 says: Mar 1, 2012 9:59 AM

    Oh Peyton will show Irsay how well he can throw…Next season in Indy when the Dolphins visit the Colts.

  10. wryly1 says: Mar 1, 2012 10:03 AM

    Can’t at all see Manning in the category of aging veteran looking for one more shot. That’s just not who he is. If he can’t satisfy himself, let alone any other team, that he’s capable of playing at a high level, he’ll simply retire. In the meantime, the CBA and the NFL’s business calendar demand this be played out on as it is.

  11. annes22 says: Mar 1, 2012 10:18 AM

    This is ridiculous. Mr Irsay is behaving like a complete idiot with his tweeting. I don’t understand an owner doing this all the time. I haven’t seen another owner in the NFL do it at anytime. Maybe he has just learn’t how to tweet, so he’s like a spolit child doing it.
    Let’s move on with Peyton and the Colts.

  12. dyhoerium says: Mar 1, 2012 10:27 AM

    As a Colts fan, I’m very sad.

  13. aardvark4gb12qb15 says: Mar 1, 2012 10:29 AM

    Why are they continuing to play these little games, when we all know it has moved to the next stage?

  14. colts01 says: Mar 1, 2012 10:50 AM

    If we would have kept Sorgi instead of drafting Painter we would not be talking about this cause the Colts would have won 7 or 8 games and been out of contention for Luck and Manning would be back. :) Would of, Could of, Should of but we didn’t. Time to change my license plate from 18Colts to YIrsay. lol

  15. len462 says: Mar 1, 2012 11:17 AM

    Never been a big Manning fan but to say he got paid for doing nothing is foolish. The guy went through 4 surgeries and probably busted his butt to get ready to play is not nothing.
    How many millions has the colts brand made with Manning as the face of the franchise?

  16. supremeomega says: Mar 1, 2012 12:15 PM

    Yeah because Sorgi is lighting it up elsewhere…

  17. EJ says: Mar 1, 2012 12:32 PM

    The Colts are doing the right thing by moving on to the next Franchise QB, but they are doing it the wrong way.

  18. jjbadd says: Mar 1, 2012 12:32 PM

    At first, I thought Irsay was being harsh, for not trying to keep Manning around. However, the more I think about it, the more I realize that from a buisness standpoint, it would be very foolish to pay that, without knowing for sure if he will even be able to play. I understand the loyalty issue, but the 26 million he got last yr is sufficient. If Manning truly wants to remain a Colt, then he should restructure his contract so that the Colts aren’t walking in next season blind. I feel the ball is in Mannings court, he needs to show some of his loyalty to his team and fans, that he is willing to compromise, so that everyone can come out a winner. Either way, it will be over in a few days.

  19. killxswitch says: Mar 1, 2012 1:11 PM

    steelbydesign says: Mar 1, 2012 9:53 AM

    I have a question, particularly for Colts fan… Does anyone really care who “wins” in this situation or who “doesn’t want” the other?

    I think it’s a pretty simple situation.
    - Peyton only has a couple years left at best and would like to try and get back to a Super Bowl (which isn’t going to happen in Indy).

    - The Colts are about to take their QB of the future and are in rebuilding mode, and it wouldn’t make sense at all financially to keep Peyton.

    Releasing him in a win-win for Peyton and the Colts. Why can’t they both just say it’s been good, but this is better for both of us now. Thanks for the memories and good luck.

    ————

    This is what I wish they would have done. Both Irsay and Manning have done more damage to their reputations than is necessary, all in the name of trying to not look like the bad guy.

    There is no way to position this so that fans feel good about it. The best thing to do would be to lay out the issues in a frank manner, and if Manning won’t take the cut necessary to stay on the roster (which is his right), then just shake hands, say thanks to each other, and that they’ll see each other again when Manning retires a Colt.

  20. mayhemmatt300 says: Mar 1, 2012 1:50 PM

    Wow you certainly are doing a lot of supposing to make up for the lack of actual reporting. None of your hearsay has been proven at all. When did Manning state that he wanted to move on? Where did he state this at? When did the Colts say they want to move on. You people should understand that money is not an object for some players out there. And yes, as you would expect; Peyton Manning is one of those people who you would give your first born too. Just watch.

  21. buzzbissinger says: Mar 1, 2012 4:41 PM

    “…the sooner we can get on to the much bigger question of where Manning will play, if anywhere, in 2012.”

    Now that didn’t hurt so bad, did it?

  22. teal379 says: Mar 1, 2012 6:11 PM

    Not a fan of either the team or Manning but a fan of football.

    I don’t see how Peyton’s really hurt his rep. He was hurt, he is rehabbing and is under contract.

    The owner has buyer’s remorse now and is looking to move on.

    Can understand that.

    They probably should move on from Peyton but they way he’s doing it is bad. Bad for him, bad for the team and bad for the NFL.

    Say what you want about Thompson/Favre deal but Ted basically said – “He retired, we moved on. I can’t un-ring that bell” Irsay’s spent his time coming across as a schizophrenic and narcissistic owner with little to no basis in reality. Every other tweet is a back peddle from the one before.

  23. jgava19 says: Mar 1, 2012 6:58 PM

    Zona bound.

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