Peyton Manning Derby: Down to three teams?
March 17, 2012 @ 12:05:03 PDT
What we think we know...
Best opportunity for Manning
When this saga began, I wrote the 49ers were my dark horse team in the Manning derby. The two sides just make a lot of sense to be tied together at the hip, which KFFL's Cory Bonini echoed in his recent report on the situation.
Windows for success in the NFL are traditionally small. Manning's window is also incredibly small, and that is taking into the assumption that he'll even be 80 or 90 percent of what he was prior to missing an entire season recovering from neck surgery.
The 49ers, from top to bottom, provide Manning with the best opportunity to win right now. They're in a weak division, they have a talented team in place and their defense is arguably the best in the league. These are characteristics in a team most quarterbacks would die for; and Manning has rarely benefited during his career with the Colts of having a team as balanced as the 49ers are.
Before a bow can be tied on this situation, each team involved has to weigh several significant items:
Where is Manning's health?
Is this the Colt you should hitch your wagon to financially?
Manning is a short-term solution.
This situation is playing out in real time and a decision on where Manning finishes his career should come in short order. I think the smart money is on the 49ers, but things that make the most sense on paper don't always play out that way in the world of the NFL. I have to say I'm slightly giddy at the thought of a motivated Randy Moss catching balls from No. 18 with the 49ers.
Which team do you think signs Manning?
About Ryan R. Bonini
Founding KFFL in 1996, Bonini serves as VP of technology for KFFL's parent company, USA TODAY SPORTS. Bonini was named the 2009 Fantasy Football Writer of the Year by the FSWA and received honors with the Best Fantasy Football Series in '10.
His work has been found in USA TODAY Sports, Yahoo! Sports, FOX Sports, CBS Sports, NFL.com, and many others. He has also been featured on numerous radio programs around the country. Bonini is a member of the PFWA, FSWA and FSTA. Follow @RyanBonini
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