When the Broncos signed receiver Wes Welker, it appeared to close the door on Brandon Stokley returning to the team. But Peyton Manning hopes that’s not the case.
Manning said today at the opening of the Broncos’ voluntary offseason workouts that he hopes the Broncos’ front office will still find a place for Stokley at some point before the start of the regular season.
“I hope it’s not necessarily a closed door,” he said. “We added some players late in the offseason last year.”
Manning noted that he and Stokley had a great rapport from their four seasons together in Indianapolis and were able to build on it in Denver next year, and Manning said he believes the two of them could become teammates again.
“I think it’s well documented how I feel about Brandon as a player and a friend, and with the kind of season he had last year, I would still like to play with him,” Manning said. “In a perfect world I would love for both of them to be on the team this year. . . . Stokley is a great friend of mine, and as I’ve said all along, he’s always been one of my favorite teammates ever to play with.”
It’s not surprising that Manning wants his buddy back on the team, but realistically it’s unlikely that it’s going to happen as long as Welker and the Broncos’ top two returning receivers, Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker, are healthy. Manning has probably thrown his last pass to Stokley.