As the Broncos struggle to find the right quarterback for 2016, one of the team’s most prominent receiver suggests forgetting about the starting quarterback from most of 2015.
“Peyton [Manning] was last year,” Sanders told reporters on Friday, via comments circulated by the team. “I texted him yesterday and told him that I miss him being out here, but at the end of the day, this is a new team with the same goal. We have to get past that Peyton Manning era. Right now, we’re trying to find ourselves a quarterback and that’s what it’s about.”
As Vic Lombardi of Altitude Sports Network explained on Thursday’s PFT Live, none of the contenders to be the next starter are stepping up with the kind of leadership that Manning displayed over the past four years, resulting in oft-sluggish offensive performances.
That underscores Manning’s value to a franchise, which extends well beyond throwing the ball. Manning holds others to a high degree of accountability, bridging the gap between player and coach — and providing the kind of proverbial boot to the butt that only another player can ever have the credibility to apply. Manning had the accomplishments, the presence, and the personality to take charge.
With the Sheriff gone, the Broncos are waiting for one of the deputies to stand up and to take over and to generally be something other than Barney Fife. They may be waiting a while.