A year later, no clarity on Peyton Manning’s next move

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The annual Manning Passing Academy has generated plenty of sound bites and speculation regarding the status of retired quarterback Peyton Manning. It started with family patriarch Archie spilling the beans about text messages exchanged by Peyton and Dolphins coach Adam Gase last December, after Ryan Tannehill injured his knee. And it has continued with the perpetual question of what Peyton will do now that he’s done playing.

“It’s definitely important for me to stay close to the game and connected to it in different ways,” Peyton Manning said, via Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “If I took a job [in the NFL] I’m sure you’d probably hear about it. I doubt it would be kept quiet.”

But for his recent hiring as as strategic advisor to Riddell (which wasn’t kept quiet because the company issued a press release), quiet continues to be the key word with Peyton, as he spends time with family, pitches an occasional product, and otherwise enjoys life after having so much of his existence consumed by football. The fact that Peyton was fully and completely consumed by the game has caused some who know him to wonder whether he’ll ever return to the full-time grind, given his propensity to take over anything and everything about a football team — and the physical and mental burden that goes along with it.

Consider this observation from former Colts punter Pat McAfee during his visit last week to PFT Live:  “[I]f [Peyton] wanted practice to restart, if he didn’t like something that was going [on], practice would restart. If he wanted a guy to make the team, that guy made the team. He kicked [receiver] Austin Collie off the field in the middle of a game before because Austin attempted to catch [the ball] with one hand. . . .

“Peyton ran the show in Indianapolis. Everything about it. He wanted a curfew at the Super Bowl, [G.M.] Bill Polian didn’t. There was a curfew. Peyton Manning just ran everything, that’s just how it went.”

And that’s likely how it would go if Peyton Manning became a G.M. or an executive with a team. It’s his nature, and it’s one of the reasons he’ll succeed at whatever he chooses to do.

The prevailing view is that he’ll wait for a chance to join an ownership group, likely as the Bon-Jovi-in-Buffalo-style front man and not as the person who owns a controlling interest in the team. That said, the money interests that put him that position need to know he’ll essentially be controlling the team.

Fear of failure could be a factor in his decision-making process, which could cause him to be even more careful about picking the right spot to return. Or maybe he’ll be happy remaining close enough to the game to have influence and generate real revenue without sticking his hand back into the flame.

Regardless, he’s earned the right to take his time and to pick his future role(s), whatever they may be. Whatever they end up being, the game will likely be better off for it.

24 responses to “A year later, no clarity on Peyton Manning’s next move

  1. Those stories about how Peyton ran the Colts fit neatly with how he always blamed others for his endless one and dones. Spending almost two decades listening to the press try to lionize a guy who didn’t even understand the concept of team was a foreshadowing of the fake news to come.

  2. Peyton is following the Elway-method of retiring amid mega-scandal. Elway’s active involvement in multiple multi-million dollar cap scams could have seen him barred from NFL exec employment, at least for a time – so he stayed clear and kept saying he’d no interest in the NFL, until the heat moved on to the scandal and then he was announced in fait-accompli fashion, making it difficult for the league to act. Peyton will do the same.

  3. Wayne Gretzjky wasn’t much good at coaching hockey. Michael Jordan hasn’t been a hit in the NBA outside his playing career. Matt Millen was great at playing football—-shall I continue?

    Not saying he wouldn’t be a good coach or executive, he may be. But let’s not call it a guarantee.

  4. He made 300 million dollars. He can sit on the couch, he doesn’t need another job. Not hard to understand.

  5. The sad truth is for all the canonization of Manning it’s impossible to not consider the cloud under which he left the game when contemplating his potential return to it. The elephant in the Manning room remains HGH can not legally be prescribed off label and certainly isn’t approved as a prenatal medication. If and when he returns to the game in any public capacity someone is bound to start asking him unavoidable questions that have no acceptable answers as far as his legacy goes. I don’t want to be misunderstood as impugning Manning’s accomplishments but the simple truth is the truth never came out.

  6. Gotta love the pats fans constantly trying to paint scandals on every other team/players to deflect attention from the team/players that lead the league in confirmed cheating scandals. It’s quite sad really.

  7. When you’re innocent, you never want to allow a lawyer to send private investigators to a clinic to check your files as they said in the media. Not only that, but allow these same investigators to speak with the accuser and intimidate them until they recant the real story. Dr. Guyer had a history of supplying HGH illegally from China and he got caught with it back in 2007.

    When an athlete has millions of dollars in the bank and their wife is pregnant, why acquire HGH from a shady doctor with a questionable past? The evidence is overwhelming for those who actually followed this case.

    On the sexual assault investigation when Peyton was back in college, Jamie Naughwright won a defamation lawsuit against the University of Tennessee and they had to pay her $150,000. Peyton went a step further though and paid her off twice anyways because he didn’t want her to file another suit.

    He mentioned her name in his book and he later sent disturbing envelopes to the Florida Southern College, where Jamie worked.

    The information in the book broke a court agreement and the envelopes got her fired. Peyton Manning is a great quarterback, but his reputation has taken a huge hit for knowingly using HGH and for the cover-up scandal at the University of Tennessee. No one can say that none of this didn’t happened.

  8. denverscott says:
    Jun 25, 2017 3:45 PM
    Gotta love the pats fans constantly trying to paint scandals on every other team/players to deflect attention from the team/players that lead the league in confirmed cheating scandals. It’s quite sad really.

    1 3


    i am pretty certain a federal jude did not
    absolve the broncos of cap cheating from 1995, 1996, and

    meanwhile, goodell has been caught lying
    at least 3 times in a fedeal court and told to go home
    and get his shinebox, all so he could frame a narrative
    to keep his 40 mil per

    “quite sad really” and so is your iq

    no go put on that arena league helmet and uni
    in that hideous orange and get your paper tiger
    shinebox, too, boy

  9. Fear of failure could be a factor in his decision-making process
    He should be used to it by now.

  10. Two of the most on-field intense and intelligent quarterbacks I’ve seen are Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. If I had either as my quarterback, I’d let them run the game. We’ve seen an awful lot of quarterbacks that can’t or won’t read a defense and respond accordingly (Jeff George, Michael Vick, etc etc) But with Peyton and Tom, you have a coach and top notch player on the field. Of course, Tom has usually played having a defense while Peyton has not.

    Bear in mind that coaches are many if not most times made by players. Look at the top coaches who had a quarterback retire or move on, then the team goes downhill and the ‘top tier’ coach is fired. Then another team hires him, but that team doesn’t have a top tier quarterback and that coach is fired again. Mike Holmgren said at one point that he owed his career to Bret Favre. He’s not the only one.

  11. Sad to see so much hatred of a legend. The guy went to 4 Super Bowls with 4 different head coaches (3 Journeymen) none of whom were named Brlichick, Walsh, Noll or Shula.

  12. Sad to see so much hatred of a legend.
    Yea, what’s to dislike with this guy? Always grubbed for the last nickle over building a team to win championships; shilled for every ad dollar instead of insisting on sharing with team mates (as you know who did); blamed team mates for his dismal playoff record; blamed his wife for drug shipments; assaulted women in college; hiring goons to intimidate witnesses, and worst of all the shrugs, pouty face, head hanging and lack of guts when he laid down instead of fighting.

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