“High interest” in Peyton Manning


It’s easy for a team to claim, publicly and/or privately, that it’s not interested in Peyton Manning before Manning actually is available.  But as the divorce is becoming more and more inevitable, folks apparently are reconsidering those knee-jerk reactions of non-interest.

Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that, at the Scouting Combine, teams that “once said they wouldn’t pursue Peyton Manning [are] now pondering that possibility.”  Schefter adds that “[i]nterest in 18 is high.”

As it should be.  If Manning can throw even at 60 percent of his past arm strength, he’ll be in the top half of all NFL quarterbacks.  And the closer he gets to 100 percent, the closer he gets to the top of the heap.

Taking a quick look through the list of conferences and divisions, the following teams should be very interested:  Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Browns, Jaguars, Titans, Chiefs (the head coach has already said the team will be), Broncos, Raiders, Redskins, Vikings, 49ers, Cardinals, Seahawks.

Even teams like the Bengals, Ravens, Texans, Eagles, Bears, and Buccaneers should consider the possibility of pursuing Peyton.

NFL coaches constantly talk about having a willingness to upgrade at every position.  Though tinkering with the starting quarterback can be problematic, especially if the team swings and misses and then has to love the one it’s with, the quest for championships begins and ends with a having high-level quarterback.

That’s why the Jets jettisoned Chad Pennington for Brett Favre, and why the Vikings twice told Tavaris Jackson to take a seat.  Once Manning is on the market, some other guy who’s supposedly a starter will soon find himself either not atop the depth chart, or not employed.

66 responses to ““High interest” in Peyton Manning

  1. I wouldn’t take him at 60 percent as the writer suggests. He better be at least 80 before even considering.

  2. I can’t take this anymore. Of course teams are interested. It’s a non-story. This is getting as bad as “Favre’s trainer’s brother-in-law’s best friend says Brett is leaning towards retirement.”

  3. High Risk / High Reward

    A team is going to know rather quickly if the investment in Manning is going to pay off.

  4. Puhleeze. Manning at 60% of his arm strength is Chad Pennington at 80%.

    “Even teams like the Bengals, Ravens, Texans, Eagles, Bears, and Buccaneers should consider the possibility of pursuing Peyton.”

    A 36 year old QB with huge injury concerns and a losing playoff record should be considered over Schaub, Flacco, Dalton, Vick, Cutler and Freeman? Most of those QBs haven’t even hit their prime yet. I’m not sure I can take you seriously anymore.

  5. If Manning can comeback 100%, he should be sought after. No matter how had your team is, he can make it look like a super bowl contender. That will bring job security to coaches, front office personnel, and possibly help teammates keep their jobs.

    At the end of the day, that’s everything you can ask for in the NFL. Put a talented team around, you also might get a few rings.

  6. The Bears? We have some serious needs, but a starting QB should not even be on our radar.

    Cutler, honestly, should be the least of our worries to replace/upgrade right now. We all know what they need. Let’s hope the front office does too!

  7. I disagree that the Vikings should be interested. Sure, they took a shot with Favre and tried McNabb last season. Favre made sense, in that the rest of the team was pretty solid and good QB play almost got them to the Super Bowl, where they would have had a fighting chance. But, the Vikings’ talent had eroded greatly since then. They have way too many holes for one QB, even if he was at the level of his prime, to fix. And, he won’t be at the level of his prime. The only teams that “should” have an interest in Peyton (if he is even healthy) are teams that are already playoff type teams and need the extra boost that better QB play could give them.

  8. Peyton has never had a cannon for an arm. Yes, he can make all the throws. But it is his head as much or more than his arm that has gotten him to this point. 60% just won’t get it done. Sorry.

  9. “If Manning can throw even at 60 percent of his past arm strength, he’ll be in the top half of all NFL quarterbacks. ”

    This is one of the most ridiculous statements I have ever heard. Any NFL QB at 60 percent arm strength would not be effective in the NFL. Manning never had that strong of an arm to begin with. ..and the Ravens have 0% interest in him….zero! Once teams start REALLY evaluating their “interest”in him, there will not be many suitors!

  10. I don’t get all the hype. Michael Lombardi recently reported the follwing, “He can’t throw,” said Michael Lombardi of the NFL Network via Evan Silva. “I’ve talked to people who’ve caught the ball for him. He can’t throw the ball to his left. He can’t throw…across his body because he doesn’t feel it. People that catch the ball for him say he doesn’t really have velocity”. So what is all th hype about again? This guy is 36, has had multiple neck surgeries, and still hasn’t healed completely. When he was healthy he had trouble winning big games. Why do people think he will be any better now? Enough of the Peyton hype. Just go away please. Sounds like your done.

  11. You have to be joking. Manning is such seriously damaged goods that even if his arm strength is 98% of what it once was all it’s going to take is one good hit to put the guy down for the season if not in a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

    I can’t think of any NFL coaches stupid enough to think they can get an entire season from Peyton Manning.

    I can think of a couple of cash-rich owners stupid enough to think it, however.

  12. “Even teams like the Bengals, Ravens, Texans, Eagles, Bears, and Buccaneers should consider the possibility of pursuing Peyton.”

    Why should the Bengals, Ravens or Texans – or even the Eagles – consider him? What are you smoking?

  13. Why would the ravens be interested in Peyton Manning? Last I knew Joe flacco was gettin it done for them. I could see him going to Vikings though. I think that’d be a nice fit.

  14. Mike, did you just wake up from a long night or something? 60 % of his arm strength will put him in the top half of all NFL QBs? I don’t think so.

    And you’ve listed just about every NFL team as a team that should be interested. Like the Bengals are going to sit fan-favorite Andy Dalton, or Matt Schaub will be benched for the Texans, or Mike Vick for the Eagles. Get real!

    I usually really enjoy reading your stuff, but this almost smacks of a paid promotion for Peyton Manning!!

  15. If Peyton Manning really wanted to remain a Colt, he’d be one. All PM would have to do is agree to move the bonus deadline or reduce it down dramatically.

    Instead, it appears Manning may be trying to force his way out of Indy, so he doesn’t have to live through a re-building effort, which will likely see some of the team’s other stars (like Reggie Wayne and Robert Mathis) moving on to other teams.

    So yes, there’s every reason to believe Irsay isn’t going to be dumb enough to pay Manning $28 Million to play on a rebuilding team with the QB of the future (Andrew Luck) waiting there to start a new era in Colts football.

  16. Who would want Manning without seeing if he can throw and by the rules of the NFL no one gets to see that other that trainers and doctors so perhaps they are not allowed to say what they saw???

  17. Too much risk on this guy. One good sack and this guy will never be able to walk again.
    Any team in the playoffs last year should not even consider it. Not worth it.

  18. the bears line can’t protect the young franchise qb they have and you want them to sign a aging qb coming off 4 neck surgeries with no arm strength?

  19. Peyton needs to play as many games in warm weather and/or indoors as he can. Although the Vikings (currently) and the Lions play indoors which would suit him, who knows where the Vikings will play in two years. TCF? Old Man Manning will not function well in outdoor games in Minneapolis, Chicago, and Green Bay.

    Miami is the best destination for him. He has a condo in South Beach, he can easily be paired with Reggie Wayne who went to college at Miami, and they have a pretty good team, save for the QB position. Jeff Saturday would likely be open to playing with Manning there as well.

    Their defense won’t lose many games. Manning with Jake Long, Mike Pouncey, and Jeff Saturday on his line, and Brandon Marshall and Reggie Wayne as receivers? It’s a no-brainer if they can pull it off.

    Not to mention, the annual games with New England.

    The only other option I really see working in his favor is Arizona. The Seahawks are getting better and the 49ers are excellent, but both are mild climates, and St Louis is indoors. All of his games in that division would be suitable for his health, and the Cardinals will NOT win with Kevin Kolb.

    And the same thing applies with the Cardinals and Reggie Wayne/Jeff Saturday. Wayne and Fitzgerald as targets? Defensive nightmare!

    If I were a betting man, I’d put my money on Miami. But outside of Arizona and the Fins, he’s not likely to be terribly successful unless he’s nearly 100%, and even then, he needs a solid supporting staff, which most teams don’t have.

  20. nathanbetz91 says:
    Feb 27, 2012 10:40 AM
    Why would the ravens be interested in Peyton Manning? Last I knew Joe flacco was gettin it done for them. I could see him going to Vikings though. I think that’d be a nice fit.

    Joe Flacco has a better winning % then Peyton Manning in the post season.

    Fangirlism is a mental disorder.

  21. Who wrote this, Peyton’s agent? You listed basically every team in the NFL and they absolutely should not be interested in Peyton, but more importantly they won’t be.

    This is all artifical hype designed to get fans excited about 2004 Peyton joining their team, but he’s not the same guy he was wvwn 2 years ago. Furthermore the only teams that should and will go for him are losing teams in rebuilding mode. The only possible exception is the Jets or Chiefs.

  22. Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Browns, Jaguars, Titans, Chiefs (the head coach has already said the team will be), Broncos, Raiders, Redskins, Vikings, 49ers, Cardinals, Seahawks.

    Even teams like the Bengals, Ravens, Texans, Eagles, Bears, and Buccaneers should consider the possibility of pursuing Peyton.
    No to the Bills, Peyton wont go there, Miami is a GREAT fit for him. the Jets arent a great fit, but he can win there. the Browns likely wont get him. i doubt Peyton goes to Jacksonville, the Titans should NOT get Peyton, the Chiefs dont need him, but it wouldnt be bad. the Broncos wont get him and Peyton wont go there, cant see the Raiders getting him, the Vikings wont either, the 49ers said they wont, i dont think Manning and Carroll fit, Arizona and Washington are ideas, but i see him avoiding Washington and playing Eli twice….As for those other teams who should consider Peyton, the Bengals, NO, they got Dalton. The Texans, maybe, only because he would be a good tutor for Yates too!! the Ravens, no, they got Flacco. The Eagles, no, Vick. the Bucs, no, they got a young Freeman, let him grow, get him help and the Bears, a huge NO! Cutler has played well, get him protection and a WR.

  23. Id take him on the Browns…..Let Mccoy learn from him for the next 2-3 seasons, maybe try Mccoy again after that, (still young) If he doesnt work out, you didnt unload the boat to pick RGIII and we still added pieces in the draft over the next 2-3 seasons. He would make this team A LOT better, and everyone knows the Ravens and Steelers are slowly on the decline….Bengals + Browns are the AFC norths future!!!!!!

  24. He should be considered as Head Coach for those teams, not as QB.

    That’s the next level, and that’s where Peyton Manning will shine. Mark my words: Peyton might become the best Head Coach to ever run an NFL team.

  25. Has ANYONE stopped to consider the fact that there isn’t a bigger blind-homer fan of Manning than Irsay. Do you think for an instant that if there was a CHANCE Manning could play again, that Irsay wouldn’t be doing everything in his power to restructure a deal to sign this guy???? Maybe he is and we just know nothing about it but…if he lets him walk,that should tell everyone something!

  26. I’m a Colts fan and love myself some Peyton, the man is a legend here.

    However, Every article on Peyton should come with an asterisk that basically assumes that another procedure may be needed in the future and the uncertainty of bone spurs and nerve regeneration will be attached to ANY team’s decision especially the Colts. It appears that all these articles completely disregard the Health part of the discussion. All you hear is about interested teams and not about the reality of his health and the any future obstacles he may encounter.

  27. If Mike were hunting, this would be called buck-fever… The Peyton Manning courtship will be limted to a few teams. Here’s why…

    1) While everyone may kick the Petyon Manning tires, there will only be a modest list of folks that get serious. You got salaray cap implications too.

    The bengals have Dalton and won’t have two roosters in the henhouse. C’mon. Raiders have Palmer, not going anywhere given the king’s ransom paid. Ealges have vick.

    Unlikely, but possible that the Ravens or Bears would dump their current guys. There would be chemistry chaos for these guys to keep their current starters and bring in Manning. Titans have two alpha QBs as it is.

    2) The other gate is Peyton, almost certainly, will limit the teams he talks to. i.e. estabilished playoff (or near playoff) teams that he views are contenders for the superbowl. i.e. coaching stability and a good supporting cast.

    Peyton may play footsie, but he won’t go anywhere near the Jaguars, Browns, Chiefs

    Bills, Vikings, Redskins, Broncos are probably not viewed as “close” to winning it all.

    Dolphins have new coaching and would normally be out of the running, but they will throw gobs of money at him. This is the stalking horse Peyton will use to leverage the teams below.

    So that leaves the Jets, 49ers, Cardinals, and Seahawks as fertile landing grounds. Who’s the strongest team in this mix? If they want him, Petyon will be singing “Nothing could be finer than to be in San Francisco in the morning…”

  28. @mwcarolina

    If you think the Chiefs don’t need Peyton, then you must not watch many Chiefs game. This team has elite talent on defense, a good receiving corps, an offensive line that isn’t as far off from being solid as you might think, and is getting one of the most explosive running backs in the league back next year.

    Matt Cassel is a game manager, not a game winner.

  29. Even teams like the Bengals, Ravens, Texans, Eagles, Bears, and Buccaneers should consider the possibility of pursuing Peyton.

    I’ve been coming here for years and this may be the dumbest thing our fearless leader has ever said

  30. Why do so many of you say he is one sack from being sidelined forever? Didn’t you see the reports? He is not at a higher risk for neck injury. Simple. Done. His nerves are the problem. This type of surgery has been multiple times for other NFL players, and they all played. Broken bones heal. His fusion healed. Now it’s the nerves, and the brain.

    If he throws at 80% of normal velocity, can his brain adapt to that reality, and get the ball where it needs to be? He has always been the best anticipator of throws, and knows where and when to make them. It’s true they listed too many teams, as it’s not really about who needs him, but who does he need. He’s not going to Tampa or Jacksonville, as they are losing franchises. He will pick the team he wants, and he will go.

  31. The 49ers are not going to go after Manning. First of all Alex Smith will be back and the two biggest things the 49ers need to do is resign Carlos Rogers and Alex Smith. They will probably use the Franchise Tag on Dashon Goldson too. Then their most pressing need is WR, they need someone opposite Crabtree so defenses cannot double team him every game. In to play comes Vincent Jackson. If the 49ers make a play for Manning then they can kiss Alex Smith goodbye and any chances of signing Vincent Jackson. Harabaugh has already came out and said Alex Smith is our guy as well as saying he wants a big body WR too. For a team that fell a just short of the Superbowl, it’s seems like a lot to risk for a player who isn’t even 100% yet. Plus, I wouldn’t want Manning anyways. One wrong hit and whichever team signs him looks like the biggest morons ever. Resign you secondary and get Alex Smith a 2-3 year deal and go make a play for Vincent Jackson and the 49ers will be in the Superbowl next year. FRISCO ALL DAY!!!!

  32. Two things came to mind reading the headline “high interest in Manning”

    1) PM will hawk any product so I just figured that he was doing a commercial for some medical marijuana head shop in Phoenix or something.

    2) The Jets must be “high” if they think PM will go there.

  33. Peyton will be a shell of himself. The Colts babied him there n just watch if your team gets him. He’s gona act like he’s above the owner n the team. And p.s. He may need another neck procedure soon cause of more bone spurs. A qb at 36 and 4 neck procedures and a year away from the game. Teams with young up n coming qbs should say NO!

  34. The one good thing about incessant Manning posts is that they bring out the opinions of a host of shut-ins who know very little about football. Peyton Manning, at 36 and after a handful of neck surgeries, is as good or better than your starting QB. That goes for everyone.

    Go Lions! Go Badgers!

  35. Sorry Mike,

    I love Peyton, but to suggest that even with 60% arm strength, Peyton is better than half the QB’s in the league could be inaccurate. Manning is a QB who doesn’t have great arm strength to begin with, and to take a strong portion of it away from him will certainly hamper his game. This is a guy who just had 4 neck surgeries and may likely need more. If I was a GM, I wouldn’t go down this road. I truly believe a team would be better off bringing in a 42 year old Brett Favre.

  36. “The Prophet says:
    Feb 27, 2012 11:00 AM
    Who wrote this, Peyton’s agent? You listed basically every team in the NFL and they absolutely should not be interested in Peyton, but more importantly they won’t be.”

    It’s from Schefter and the Peyton-friendly ESPN football media. Look forward to similar stories from Clayton and Mortensen as well.

  37. eltex- dumbest post in a long time…he is not healed…sorry…..doctors can say what they want….not true…he NEVER will be..it is as simple as that!If it was that simple,he wouldn’t be traveling to Europe to get some experimental procedure done (which didnt work)…wake up and get real!

  38. “If Manning can throw even at 60 percent of his past arm strength, he’ll be in the top half of all NFL quarterbacks.”

    I’d like to see the factual evidence that supports that claim. A 40% loss of arm strength wouldn’t get him on the field.

  39. Karma works in mysterious ways…this injury is Manning’s Karma for his “mightier than thou” attitude…and his treatment of team-mates as if he OWNS them…..he is the most self absorbed person in the NFL….karma is a b*t^ch!!!!!!!!!

  40. Sorry to join the dogpile, but the 60% comment is flatly inaccurate. If you float passes out there at 60%, they are going to be picked all day. Heck, if Manning loses just 10% of his arm strength, his completion percentage will start to plummet, and his interceptions will climb. Diminished arm strength, along with reduced mobility in the pocket, are the two hallmarks of an aging quarterback whose time is just about up. Veteran savvy is great, but it only carries you so far – your body still has to be able to make the plays.

    Long story short – any team that commits guaranteed money to Peyton without seeing him throw is nuts.

  41. If we see PM play again anywhere watch his 30-40 yard passes. If they aren’t tight spirals like he threw before 2007 then we’ll know he’s not there and probably never will be.
    Jaworski said it a few years ago and everyone went nuts.
    Fact is PM took the hit that hurt his neck in late 2006 and it took over 3 years for it to become a problem that required surgery(ies). Thats how much time it took HIS bulging disc to slowly pinch the nerve and squeeze it to (nearly?) dead.

    I can’t see it taking 6 months to get to even 90% what took 3 years to damage…. time will tell.

  42. @pitchblack816 says:Feb 27, 2012 10:51 AM

    Too much risk on this guy. One good sack and this guy will never be able to walk again.
    Any team in the playoffs last year should not even consider it. Not worth it.

    I keep reading all these posts about him not walking again. I don’t think that is the issue. It is his arm strength from a pinched nerve. Maybe if he takes a good hit he won’t be able to whack off with his right hand anymore.

  43. The diffrence is Manning himself is not leaking stories or causing stories, Farve loves the media attention
    For example retiring 100 times..
    And at the end of the Farve sucked, he was over rated
    he was a INT machine that cost the packers atleast 4 super bowls.
    He cost the vikings 1 atleast
    I high;y doubt Raiders would take Manning when they have Palmer, Palmer is a elite QB and should be 100% ready this year to get that Lombardi Trophy.
    Not to mention Raiders don’t have that kind of money
    By the way Eagles can not afford him either.
    There are only 2 teams that Manning could go to and get the money he wants. 1 is Miami 2 is KC but he will not go to KC he knows even with him as QB they can not beat Chargers and Raiders.
    I wonder why a team like the Vikings do’nt go after him, I think he would be a great fit there, Its a dome team with decent WRs, and a good D and they have Peterson

  44. An even bigger problem with Peyton going to another team that no one seems to pick up on is the fact that either a) peyton will need to learn a new offensive system, after essentially running the same one his entire career, or b) the entire offense will need to learn a new offensive system, including the offensive coordinator (which would fly over like a lead zeppelin.

    Either way, there will be some issues with getting Peyton and the rest of the offense on the same page. He will not be able to go to a new team and be instantpy successful, like everyone believes he will be. Even without his injury concerns, at his age, he has a couple years left at most. It would be unwise for any team to pick him up.

  45. He’s never going to the Jets and play for that knucklehead coach & GM. He’ll never consider the Jags, Bills, Vikes or Chiefs because there isn’t an allure playing with those teams. The only reason he’d consider the Titans is the college connection. It’ll come down to the Skins, Fish, and 49ers. Plus, it all comes down to health. He has to be evaluated by each team’s doctors once released. In other words, this will take a month (draft time) until he signs or retires.

  46. golonger says:
    Feb 27, 2012 12:30 PM
    hatesycophants..and you are front and center of those that know nothing about football!!!!!!
    Yeah that little rant cracked me up also. A guy who can’t even throw normally yet is better than any other QB in the NFL? As my team’s esteemed funnyman WR would say” Child, please”. I think that post should be in the dictionary next to the definition of the phrase “pot calling the kettle black”.

    He’ll have a couple suitors no doubt. The kind of teams who if they were people would sit around reminiscing over their HS football days a la Al Bundy.

  47. Hmmmmmm, the Colts need to hang on to a 60% Manning. Luck learning from 60% Manning is a “good thing” seems to me. Hmmmmmmm

    just like how he help trained curtis painter and jim sorgi? and didnt they suck? Luck doesnt need to learn from peyton, thats why u have a qb coach and offensive coordinator and head coach, theyre the ones who helps Luck in the nfl, peyton didnt have another veteran qb help him, and he turned out great, get a clue man!!

  48. Colts are gonna keep him. How many times do I have to say it? If Manning goes, then so goes Saturday (to the same team or the Colts front office), and Reggie Wayne will go with Manning (he still has some left in the tank). This is why the Colts haven’t resigned Wayne. They are waiting to see how much they have avail after paying Manning. Wayne will stay for cheap to play with Manning.

    Irsay might be an idiot (and I believe he is to some degree), though firing the Polians was a very smart move! But he’s surely not so dumb to ditch one of the Greatest QB’s in history, a certain HOF’er Saturday, AND one of the most beloved Colts ever in Wayne go too… in one swoop? Heck Wayne may even be a future HOF’er himself (that is debatable).

    Plus, Manning can’t even throw for the Colts brass until April. Only the medical staff can watch him throw otherwise. The March 8th deadline means nothing unless Irsay is truly that stupid and dumps Manning site unseen. That would take the cake in Indy, and it would be ugly.

    I’m willing to bet that Manning is good to go like Saturday says he is, and is playing a chess match with Irsay. Irsay has more to lose then Manning. He’ll go play somewhere for tons of money and a chance to win quickly (which is why he’ll go to the team with the best o-line and a stud running game). Irsay could be stuck with a angry mob of fans, and a bad team ran by a rookie QB, Head Coach, and GM. Oh, and Curtis Painter.

    Manning has said since day one that he wants to stay in Indy and retire a Colt on his terms. So really, the ball is in Irsays court desire what he says to the contrary. The longer Manning stays quiet and gets back to 100%, the more Irsay starts to nervously wonder just how healthy he is. You don’t want it mad at you, do you? Manning has nothing to prove. He’s proved enough in 14yrs.

    THIS is why a healthy Manning renegociates for a short term, incentive rich deal, in Indy.

  49. I’m not sure I want Manning comin to my Card’s! What…we”ll have a cpl good seasons and then back to were we left off when Warner retired. Although I know Kolb is not the answer to our problems…I wouldn’t mind givin him another year with a full off-season. Plus I’m more than happy with Skelton as of right now…he needs more playin time….not sure he’s our answer either but so far he’s doin fine! We need to concentrate on our OL….mainly OT’s…..Kolb and Skelton would play much better if they had some pass protection!

  50. The Bills? Really? C’mon man, do you have to put the Bills on EVERY friggin’ list of teams you put together for each g*dammed rumor, speculation, supposition and fantasy that comes along?

    Yes, they need an elite QB. Everybody team needs an elite QB, but, by definition, they can’t have one.

    “very interested”? What, are they just that one puzzle piece away from a Super Bowl run? How about a third category, “wishful thinking”?

    Do you seriously think that either Peyton Manning or the Bills are considering this? The Head Coach is also the Offensive Coordinator, the GM is a cash-to-the-cap/build through the draft guy, the Defense (could probably stop right there, but I’m on a Blutarsky-like roll), Ralph Wilson’s wallet, Ralph Wilson’s very windy/rainy/snowy stadium – Peyton gets his wins playing in a dome against a weak division – not happening here, and finally, everybody on the planet universally agrees that the Bills have no chance at all of ever winning the Super Bowl. Ev-er.

    Gotta tell ya, not seeing the fit.

    If you put them on the list of teams who might trade up to RGIII, it would be slightly less laughable.

  51. The only league Peyton Manning will be playing in next year is the National Oreo League…although, he should probably not lick too hard. He might injure his neck!

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