I have a question for all these Peytonnites who believe their team should jump at the chance to ‘draft’ him. Would we be having this conversation if Peyton Manning had played football last season?
If Peyton Manning is the obvious choice for your team, then how come the team that had him for the past fourteen seasons, the team he won a Super Bowl with, the team he took to two Super Bowls, the team he won four MVP’s and a bunch of games with . . . how come that team is content to show Peyton the door and then draft a guy who has never played a down of professional football?
The lucky winner of this sweepstakes will receive a 36 year old quarterback coming off four neck surgeries inside of two years time. A quarterback who missed all of last season. A quarterback who is on the B side of his career. A quarterback who has been given a clean bill of health- entirely due to the fact that he hasn’t been hit yet. A quarterback whose ability to change up at the line of scrimmage will necessarily change the system a coach has in place or is attempting to put in place.
The odds are against this ending well for the team that signs Manning, if history is any indication. History, risk, age, system overhaul . . what else do these teams need? Short of frogs falling from the sky.
Anyway, here are some landing spots Peyton should choose in lieu of football. Jobs that do not include getting drilled by a linebacker on a mission.
Saturday Night Live– The guy is extremely funny. Maybe it’s the ‘aw shucks’ persona he has crafted over time that makes it work that way- a persona which belies the real Peyton Manning. And maybe sheering off that contrast will make this union a short lived one. But most every memorable player on SNL was short lived, so I say go for it.
Monday Night Football Analyst– I think you could kick out Gruden and put this guy in there, sight unseen or heard, and you’d have a better product.
New York Yankees– He can still throw. And outside of a match up with the Red Sox, he won’t need weak side protection.
Infomercials– He’s selling teams on a devalued model of himself, so it’s pretty clear he can sell anything.
Politics– Umm, if Rick Santorum can be relevant to the national stage, Peyton can be a whole lot more than that.
And since Peyton isn’t going to take my advice on any of these counts, here’s a thought. He should switch positions and become a placekicker. You’re never going to freeze him and he’ll keep the opposing defenses very honest. And besides, this way Peyton will come to understand why all kickers drink.