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Inside the Peyton Manning contract

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When reports initial surfaced regarding Peyton Manning’s new contract in Denver, the details were sketchy.  Five years, $96 million.  That’s it.

We assumed that the truth was much more complex.  We ignored multiple reports regarding the contractual nuances and niceties, opting instead to break it all down for ourselves instead of relying on someone else’s interpretation.

We’ve now gotten to the truth.  (We’ve determined that we indeed can handle the truth, and we think you can, too.)

It’s a surprisingly simple deal, based on a review of the information and communications with a source having direct knowledge of the negotiation process.  Manning gets an $18 million fully guaranteed base salary for 2012.  Though he doesn’t get a signing bonus, he’ll receive $6 million of the $18 million base salary as an advance.

Then, if Manning is on the Broncos’ roster on the final day of the 2012 league year, his base salaries of $20 million in 2013 and $20 million in 2014 become fully guaranteed.

In other words, the Broncos can cut Manning at any point after Super Bowl XLVII and before the last day before the start of the 2013 league year and limit the contract to a one-year, $18 million investment.  And so, just as the Colts faced a $28 million decision in March 2012, the Broncos will face a $40 million decision in March of 2013.

That said, there’s a limited out for the 2014 base salary, for one specific reason.  If, during the 2013 season, Manning suffers another injury to his neck, the Broncos will be off the hook for the $20 million in 2014.  If Manning suffers an injury, regardless of severity, to any other area of his body, he still gets the $20 million in 2014.

Then, if Manning is on the roster on the final day of the 2014 league year (which will occur in February or March of 2015), his base salary of $19 million in 2015 will become fully guaranteed.

Finally, if Manning is on the roster for the final day of the 2015 league year (which will occur in February or March of 2016), his base salary of $19 million for 2016 will be fully guaranteed.

It’s that simple.  The Broncos have the unilateral right to drop Manning before the end of the 2012, 2014, or 2015 league year and avoid the remaining $78 million, $38 million, or $19 million, respectively.  And if Manning suffers another neck injury during the 2013 season, the deal can be capped at two years and $38 million.

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61 Responses to “Inside the Peyton Manning contract”
  1. titanblitz says: Mar 22, 2012 7:04 PM

    Peyton will fail miserably in Denver…count on it.

  2. babyhorsemorgan says: Mar 22, 2012 7:04 PM

    The “X” shaped scar from the surgery stitches marks the spot.

  3. realnflmaster says: Mar 22, 2012 7:06 PM

    Oakland is winning that division.

  4. mrplow3 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:06 PM

    That’s not a bad deal to get rid of an Option offense. Which let’s be honest, that’s what this was about much more than it was getting Manning.

    So if Manning is a bust this year, it cost Elway a mere 18 mil, small price for him to dump Tebow and that option offense that disgusts Elway I’m sure.

  5. babyhorsemorgan says: Mar 22, 2012 7:13 PM

    Inside the Peyton Manning contract you could house, clothe, and feed as small third world nation for several years.

  6. randygnyc says: Mar 22, 2012 7:14 PM

    I hope manning plays great and stays healthy, but the rest of the broncos get decimated. Meanwhile, I want Sanchez benched while Tebow leads the Jets to a super bowl win (and I’m a 40+ year giants fan). I want Elway fired and burned in effigy.

  7. peytonsneck18 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:17 PM

    Greedy swamp boy, has a huge pay day coming up, Paymetons! !!

  8. briguy5 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:18 PM

    As long as Denver doesn’t play the Saints, Manning will be fine.

  9. 49erjohnny says: Mar 22, 2012 7:19 PM

    So basically give Peyton Manning 18 million to hold a clipboard for sitting out the 2012 season after complaining of a sore neck. Peyton Manning the greediest player in NFL history.

  10. indywilson40 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:23 PM

    Titanblitz, you’re not bitter, are you?

  11. jackm79 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:24 PM

    Seems like one of the fairest contracts ever reported.

    Peyton will be the same Peyton that he always has been. Dominant. Starting in 2012.

  12. jsprunner says: Mar 22, 2012 7:24 PM

    What’s surprising to me (and maybe it shouldn’t be) is why Manning didn’t offer the Colts a contract like this one. From a PR standpoint, it seems like it would have been really difficult for the team to turn that down publicly. I guess BOTH sides really wanted a “divorce”?

  13. kurtzimmer says: Mar 22, 2012 7:29 PM

    What happens if Dick Seymour knocks Manning’s head clean off, slightly above his neck, does Manning still get paid?

  14. steelernationsparksjealousy says: Mar 22, 2012 7:33 PM

    Robbed

  15. tdotbronco says: Mar 22, 2012 7:33 PM

    Yeah she’s bitter.

  16. goldrush36 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:34 PM

    I’m still hedging my bets on San Diego over Denver and it has nothing to do with bitterness. I didn’t want Peyton anyway, I thought he was a bad fit for the 49ers. He is also immobile and far from clutch. We can get a better post season win ratio out of Alex Smith for a third of the price

  17. apbestever says: Mar 22, 2012 7:34 PM

    I don’t understand why people think Peyton can’t win with this roster. Is Denver’s roster any worse than the colts? The colts that went to the playoffs with him and 2-14 without him. Get real, Peyton made those guys better and he will do the same now.

  18. bozosforall says: Mar 22, 2012 7:35 PM

    peytonsneck18 says:
    Mar 22, 2012 7:17 PM
    Greedy swamp boy, has a huge pay day coming up, Paymetons! !!

    __
    Change the first part of your screen name “peyton” to “bitter red” and that explains you to a T. Your “huge pay day” is coming up on the 1st of the month (your welfare check), jealous loser.

  19. jeziyo247 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:36 PM

    I have it broken down, assuming Peyton stay healthy throughout the 5season year contract, he would have made 96 million

  20. mrslay1 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:37 PM

    Does anyone else see some jealous people here? I guess the swampboy talk coming from the swamp maggot thinks his opinon really matters in this world.

  21. cleanfoodie says: Mar 22, 2012 7:39 PM

    @49erjohnny – Wow, that’s a whole lot of butthurt just because PeyPey didn’t pick your team.

  22. therealhook says: Mar 22, 2012 7:39 PM

    Sounds like a good deal for both sides to me. With Peyton finally having a decent defense and the broncos probably looking for at least one more offensive weapon, I think mannings gunna do great there

  23. suckleague says: Mar 22, 2012 7:40 PM

    I personally can’t handle this.

  24. vondoom92 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:40 PM

    Honestly, Peyton could have used Denver, Tennessee, and San Fran as leverage to get much more out of the suitor. HE also could have told them to go to hell if they asked for a clause that protected them in case of an injury. He put the clause in the indy contract, and he is the one who put the clause in the Denver contract.

    Like it or not, it was a classy move, from one of the NFL’s most classiest players.

  25. dougydougdoug says: Mar 22, 2012 7:44 PM

    The Raiders? Win the division? They couldn’t even do it last year, when it was handed to them. No, my fine fellow, the Raiders will be playing for 2013 draft picks next year. There. Did I just break that down enough for you?

  26. indywilson40 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:44 PM

    Funny how all the Titan and 49er fans didn’t want Peyton anyway.

  27. peytonsneck18 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:52 PM

    Bozoforall, mr slay, u must be a loser broncos fan

  28. goldrush36 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:57 PM

    indywilson40 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:44 PM

    Funny how all the Titan and 49er fans didn’t want Peyton anyway.

    ___________________________________________

    Yes because the whole world MUST want a 36 year old who hasn’t played in a year…… also coming off 4 neck surgeries with a 9-10 post season record just because it’s Peyton Manning. Oh and let’s not forget handing him $20m on top of it. Say what you want that everyone is just jealous. I’m not wishing bad on Peyton at all, just think San Diego will come back stronger. He had just as good chance winning in the AFC south as he does in the west. In my opinion, he just wasn’t a good fit in SF’s offense that now has nothing but vertical receivers and Michael drop ball Crabtree. Sorry that everyone can’t meet your need for feeling you triumphed the entire world by landing Manning. Good luck to ya

  29. murf17 says: Mar 22, 2012 7:59 PM

    So the niner fans are happy with smith instead of Peyton? You guys are idiots and why is Peyton greedy when he accepted a contract that was given to him. He is the winningest active QB since he came in the league and last time I checked only 6 QBs have rings right now(Peyton Eli Brady Rogers brees and big ben) he won in Indy with a decent lineup but the D was always a problem. Its only march so all the teams that did not get Peyton have a good off season thinking ur QB is really who u want (hasselbeck Kolb smith and whatever Miami is doing)
    .

  30. harperquinn says: Mar 22, 2012 8:02 PM

    jsprunner says: Mar 22, 2012 7:24 PM

    What’s surprising to me (and maybe it shouldn’t be) is why Manning didn’t offer the Colts a contract like this one. From a PR standpoint, it seems like it would have been really difficult for the team to turn that down publicly. I guess BOTH sides really wanted a “divorce”?
    ====================================

    I suspect that if Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III hadn’t been available in the upcoming draft, Peyton would still be a Colt.

  31. denverscott says: Mar 22, 2012 8:03 PM

    Niner fans are the worst fair weather mouth breathers alive, my brother being one of them) In the playoffs? Heck yeah! Go niners! Suck this year? I don’t watch football that much. Go be synchronized swimming fans ladies. And the inbreeders from Tenn are almost as bad, one of my best bros fall in this category. Rabid fan, calling and texting every 2 mins to tell me why Peytons gonna be there. Call him now and you’ll hear something like “can’t talk now, on PFT blogging wishes that Peyton bursts into flames after breaking his neck because we never wanted him anyway. Like dealing with special needs 4 yr olds, very tiring.

  32. adkfootballfan says: Mar 22, 2012 8:07 PM

    6 starts in year one is the over/under.

    Look at Namath, Montana and now Manning…

  33. jjbadd says: Mar 22, 2012 8:11 PM

    There is also a clause that if Manning becomes injured, he has to stand on the sideline, and use his fivehead as a billboard, with the words “Bring back Tebow” wrote on it.

  34. vanmorrissey says: Mar 22, 2012 8:20 PM

    dougydougdoug says:
    Mar 22, 2012 7:44 PM
    The Raiders? Win the division? They couldn’t even do it last year, when it was handed to them. No, my fine fellow, the Raiders will be playing for 2013 draft picks next year. There. Did I just break that down enough for you?

    Based on their great trade for Carson Palmer, they probably will be playing for 2014 picks. Oakland will be lucky finishing anything better than fourth in the division.

  35. punchymcgee says: Mar 22, 2012 8:21 PM

    goldrush36 says:
    Mar 22, 2012 7:34 PM
    I’m still hedging my bets on San Diego over Denver and it has nothing to do with bitterness. I didn’t want Peyton anyway, I thought he was a bad fit for the 49ers. He is also immobile and far from clutch. We can get a better post season win ratio out of Alex Smith for a third of the price

    ————————————-
    Alex Smith career post season wins – 2
    Peyton Manning carrer post season wins – more than 2

    Peyton Manning 18 mil a year
    Alex Smith – 9 mil a year
    When checking your math. 18/9 = 2. Me thinks that is more than 1/3 the price.

  36. punchymcgee says: Mar 22, 2012 8:22 PM

    Every guy who’s tried to bag the prom queen and failed didn’t really want her anyway….after the fact.

  37. armoderate says: Mar 22, 2012 8:23 PM

    I know your just dying to get something on Tebow as a “sinner”, but frankly I really don’t see much of a contradiction. The Broncos were working with Tebow’s agent. Do we know how Tebow’s agent communicated with the Broncos or to Tebow during this process? And do you really think Tebow was in a position, like Manning, to dictate where he was going to go. Tebow answered it most accurately. The Broncos had him under contract and were legally and ultimately the decider on what team he would play for. Perhaps Tebow knew of other team offers that were interested through Tebow’s agent and that the Broncos turned them down. Do I think Elway personally talked to Tebow and said ” which team do you want to go to Timmy”. Not. Elway’s track record throughout this process was to keep Tebow out of the loop until Manning’s contract was signed. Just as he or Fox didn’t sit down with Tebow and tell him that Orton was going into camp as the starter last year. Elway may have asked his agent which team Tebow wanted to go to, but I’m doubting it. That’s just not done in the NFL. In January, Elway stated Tebow would be the starter at the beginning of camp. Does anyone really beleive Elway had faith in Tebow even though he made statements indicating he did?

  38. zonepro764 says: Mar 22, 2012 8:28 PM

    And the hate for Peyton continues. Its a shame to see one of the top 5 qb’s of all time have to be called greedy. The guy has a passion for the game let him be. I hope he wins at least one to see how much more hate everyone else throws him

  39. cashisking4life says: Mar 22, 2012 8:42 PM

    Hey Elway smart move trading Brandon Lyold away last year. Hey Peyton watch the game film from the first 5 games last yr of Kyle Orton on his back the whole time getting crushed, and that was with all the running backs and brandon lyold at the time. Now you have a great qb and no brandon lyold. Everyone said well PManning is smarter than tebow and want take a sack or a hit, he’ll quickly throw it away…well even if he’s rushed that throws off his timing and your going third down and out and not moving the ball. so whats the point. oh oh they signed caldwell…who the FFFF is caldwell and who cares…you need like a mike wallace type. lol so peyton throwing the ball with no time is no different than tebow holding the ball too long and trying to make a play and not being afraid to take a hit.

    I hope Manning stays healthy, but i still dont see the broncos fixing the oline or lack of offensive playmakers. again kyle orton is a pretty decent QB, he’s better than people give him credit for and look how far that got him last year in the first 5 games

  40. dasportsninja says: Mar 22, 2012 8:58 PM

    Colts fan here…..Still shocked Manning took the retired #18 from a dementia patient…..Very dirty move by someone I always considered a classy player. He went to Denver to take 20 million dollars as a retirement pay.. I am glad the colts let him go.. He is don-4 neck~! sururies in 1 year….Nuff said!

  41. simplyapple2 says: Mar 22, 2012 9:21 PM

    Elway playing “Wheel of Fortune”

    (I think I can get that $10,000 bonus on this spin)

    “John your spin.”

    Tickkkkkkkkkkkk tick tick tick

    Wamp wamp wamp… Bankruptcy!

    Hard to win a championship when you tie up all the cash in one player. The queen is good on a chess board, but you still need a knight or two for a solid attack.

  42. mjkelly77 says: Mar 22, 2012 9:36 PM

    How’d you get the photo of Elway shaking hands with the Frankenstein monster?

  43. mjkelly77 says: Mar 22, 2012 9:51 PM

    manning never would have stayed with the Colts. He lied and stole $24 million from the team and Irsay knows the Swamp Boy is done. He’s in it for the money, going with Denver because they guaranteed him the most. He’s a thief and be lied about his surgeries, tarnishing what he’s done during his career.

    Denver is hoping for the 2004 Manning but they’re getting the 2012 manning. Greedy Swamp Boy. Those who blindly sniff his jock can give me a thumbs down. You idiots know who you are.

  44. istateyourname says: Mar 22, 2012 10:59 PM

    If, during the 2013 season, Manning suffers another injury to his neck, the Broncos will be off the hook for the $20 million in 2014.

    Is that a Neck-Bounty? Pretty big incentive to make it look like an accident…just sayin’…

  45. aces79 says: Mar 22, 2012 11:16 PM

    Greedy all about the money not about winning

  46. duffer58 says: Mar 22, 2012 11:50 PM

    Peyton gets 6 million in advance. Peyton can not afford a place in Denver without it? LOL

  47. 1historian says: Mar 23, 2012 12:04 AM

    He is one big hit away from a wheelchair. He has all the money he needs and he should stop being so selfish, put his FAMILY first and retire.

  48. mrslay1 says: Mar 23, 2012 12:10 AM

    Sour grapes LOSER. You’ll never be a real winner with PSYHCO Harbutt

  49. derekdallas says: Mar 23, 2012 12:54 AM

    Yeah, greedy Peyton because he’s the only player in the NFL that wants to get paid and gets paid when hurt. I’m sure Tom Brady donated his millions to third world countries when he was hurt for a season (NOT) and you know, every other player that DIDN’T START 207 CONSECUTIVE GAMES FOR 14 YEARS WITHOUT INJURY. You do realize Peyton isn’t stealing this money from small children in a third world country and it would go to other rich NFL players if he didn’t sign right?

    As a former resident of Indy for 20 years and seeing what Manning did for Irsay’s rep. the Colts, and the city in general I could argue Irsay should’ve paid that money times 10 lol.

  50. xx4zu1 says: Mar 23, 2012 1:17 AM

    I wonder if the contract specifically says neck. I also wonder how low the disk issue is in Manning neck. the c-5-t-1 nerves control the arms so it is actually possible that he could re-injure the area but not hurt his neck if T-1 or T-2 goes the Broncos could be screwed because at that point it is his back.

  51. jibzek says: Mar 23, 2012 1:34 AM

    Manning just wanted to get paid and Elway is dumb enough to pay a QB who not only had repeated neck surgeries but knee as well.

    FATHER TIME is cruel… Manning has paid the troll toll and has won his MVP’s.

    Now he’s one squashing from Richard Seymour or Tamba Hali from being a Theismann sideline ornament.

  52. whatswiththehate says: Mar 23, 2012 3:49 AM

    Let’s see, Peyton is 36 years old. In the NFL today, that is called a “miracle.” If he can still throw a ball well enough for a receiver to catch, I say pay the damn man.

    I’m sure the Broncos can work with whatever weaknesses he may have because of his neck injury. We already saw how they were able to do some magic with Tim Tebow. And we all know Peyton is another Universe when it comes to being a QB compare to Tim Tebow.

    Also @ armoderate,

    Unlike Tim, Peyton has a real resume that he can stand on and demand to get paid. What does Tim Tebow have? A rabid fan-base who is so delusional, they feel he’s just as good as Peyton and a media who sees him as great material to create a circus like atmosphere everywhere he goes.

    Tim Tebow is still convincing America that his “potential” will one day turn him into the greatest QB ever and should be a starting QB even if he didn’t earn it. Peyton has already convinced America that he can do his job.

    I don’t see the problem.

  53. 2manychoices says: Mar 23, 2012 9:35 AM

    jsprunner says:
    Mar 22, 2012 7:24 PM
    What’s surprising to me (and maybe it shouldn’t be) is why Manning didn’t offer the Colts a contract like this one. From a PR standpoint, it seems like it would have been really difficult for the team to turn that down publicly. I guess BOTH sides really wanted a “divorce”?

    Who says Peyton didn’t offer to restructure his contract in Indy? Everything Irsay did prior to the Peyton press conference indicated he wanted to clean house and start over with Luck. We’ll never know if that was even an option.

  54. raiderlyfe510 says: Mar 23, 2012 9:47 AM

    If a healthy Marino couldnt contend for a SUPERBOWL in his mid to late 30s with a marginally talented squad. A Injury prone Peyton won’t either. He needed to go to a championship contender with a strong running game like Montana did…. not a team like the Donkies who gave up close to 50 points 5 different times last year.

    Peyton going to Denver is the biggest insignificant story in NFL history.

  55. lmyster says: Mar 23, 2012 10:40 AM

    His worth every dollar. Go Broncos!!!!

  56. jeziyo247 says: Mar 23, 2012 12:37 PM

    Really, san diego couldn’t even win they division with tebow at the helm weather along Peyton manning. Things just got harder for them and they’re gonna be wishing they took advantage last year in the weakest division but now, its gotten better and I think rivers is regressing and not to mention they lost their top receiver. This is how the division gonna pan out,
    1 Denver
    2 San diego
    3 Kansas city
    4 Oakland

  57. ackid47 says: Mar 23, 2012 2:37 PM

    Manning fan his whole career.And i say he should of retired and coached Luck to be the best he could be.He chose the money.He has plenty of money,but when you get a chance to get more like any other athlete,you just do it.I dont blame him for wanting money.We all want money.He will find out this year that he is done,collect his 20 million,take a year or 2 off and become a coach.WTG Peyton.Get yours you earned it.And at the same time Stick it to HorseMouth Elway.Cant ask for anything better than that now can we?

  58. aces79 says: Mar 24, 2012 1:06 PM

    why is he a psyhco because he is a winner

  59. mrslay1 says: Mar 24, 2012 4:27 PM

    Many things point to this but I will start and finish with the fact he started a fight and as per witinesses sucker punched Jim Kelly becasuse he didn’t like something he had said. Jim Kelly has more class in his little finger than harbug has in his body!

  60. aces79 says: Mar 24, 2012 4:51 PM

    jim kelly has a big mouth did you know what jim kelly said? this happen along time ago

  61. mrslay1 says: Mar 24, 2012 6:01 PM

    Yes I do. According to Harbaugh Kelly said he wasn’t tough enough so he hunted him down and cheap shotted him and said “now who’s not tough”. When replaying what Kelly accually said, “he is going to have to play tougher if the the colts don’t get a better OL”. The implacation was they needed OL help. And Jim Kelly always conducted himself was class, unlike Harbaugh who is a classless peice of TRASH.

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