I have to say, I’m shocked by this.
After failed overtures from the Tennessee Titans, Miami Dolphins, San Francisco 49ers and others, today Peyton Manning instructed his agent Tom Condon to begin contract negotiations with the Denver Broncos. Manning will be a Bronco barring some sort of collapse in contract negotiations.
Four initial reactions:
1) Thankfully, Manning lands away from the AFC East. As a Bills fan, I had zero desire to see Manning twice a year.
2) This instantly makes Denver an overwhelming favorite to win the AFC West. I’m still not sold on this team as a Super Bowl contender yet, however. They still badly need to make some defensive upgrades, and Manning’s got some work to do to make this resemble the offense he had in Indy.
3) In an offseason in which the Bills are showing surprising competence, it’s good to see other teams totally screwing it up. Looking at you, San Francisco. If you were going to go after Manning, you HAD to get him. Now you’ve pissed off Alex Smith, the QB that led you to a 13-3 season and the NFC title game…and he’s a free agent and will likely tell the 49ers to get bent and sign elsewhere. Smith could be the saving grace of Miami or Cleveland, who have also each totally bungled their QB searches this offseason.
4) And just like that, the Tim Tebow era ends in Denver. Reportedly, the Broncos will look to trade Tebow, who would be nothing but a huge distraction in Denver. You’d think Jacksonville would be all over this, but their incompetent management is apparently content to go 3-13 with Blaine Gabbert. A report has New England of all teams showing interest, which might be the only way Tebow could possibly be despised MORE around the league. This should be a fun story to follow.