Trading Peyton Manning

Recently there has been a lot of talk about the Colts and Peyton Manning moving back the March 8th deadline when Manning’s 28 million dollar bonus is due.  The deadline is before the league year begins, thus meaning that the Colts cannot trade Peyton before paying him the $28 million.  So, essentially, the Colts cannot trade Peyton.  They would have to give him the money anyways.  That wouldn’t make any sense.  But there are those, including Peter King, who think that Manning and the Colts will move the deadline back to allow the Colts more time to decide.  Tony Dungy implied that it would give the Colts a longer time to see if Peyton is healthy, as Dungy thinks they will keep him if healthy. 

But, according to some, the deadline cannot be moved back due to the CBA.  I have not confirmed this report.  But I do know that for Peyton to move back the deadline would be a big gift to Indy.  For one, if they choose, it would allow the Colts to trade Manning.  It would be unlikely, however, that Peyton would want his new team to have to give up players or picks for him.  The most likely reason that the two sides would move back the deadline is to give the Colts more time to see if Peyton is healthy. 

So,  bottom line is that it seems very unlikely that the Colts will be able to trade Peyton Manning.  So they will either have to keep him or release him.  Every day I get more certain that the Colts will keep Peyton if he is healthy (and that is a big if).  I think that the report yesterday that Jim Irsay will draft Andrew Luck does not hurt Peyton’s future in Indianapolis.  All along I have said that the Colts will likely keep Peyton Manning but draft Andrew Luck. 

As a side note, Chris Mortensen had some good insight this morning on twitter.  From Mort:

The ever-intriguing @JimIrsay & Peyton Manning both emphatic to me there have been no discussions re:ext of March 8 option bonus date.
What’s clear: Irsay & Manning will jointly determine future. Irsay makes final call on PM; new GM/ Irsay will jointly decide on Caldwell.
Whatever decision on Manning, one that will NOT happen: A trade. Irsay will never trade Manning. Release? That’s medical issue, for now.
 
Alouettes GM Jim Popp has won 4 Grey Cups, incl. 1 w Baltimore Stallions; Bill Polian won 2 Grey Cups b4 joining Bills.
 
@JimIrsay – one of great follows in Twitterverse – wanted to reiterate that Colts won’t trade #1 pick but wants a process on future QB.
Irsay still has haunting memory of day in ’73 Baltimore Colts great Johnny Unitas was traded to San Diego.
So what did I find especially intriguing?  3 things:
  1. Mort said that releasing Manning is a “medical issue, for now”.  It seems more and more likely that it will stay that way.
  2. Mort said that Irsay himself (along with Manning) will decide Manning’s fate, while also saying that Irsay and the new GM will decide Jim Caldwell’s.  With Irsay taking control of this situation, it seems even more likely Peyton will be a Colt next year (if healthy).  Irsay is incredibly loyal to Peyton Manning.
  3. This is the most interesting to me.  Mort said that Jim Irsay is still haunted by the day his father traded the legendary Johnny Unitas away from the Baltimore Colts.  There are many similarities that can be drawn between Manning and Unitas.  Both are legends, both are top-5 quarterbacks of all time (in my opinion, they are both top-2).  Both meant so much to the city they played in.  Irsay’s father Bob wasn’t very well-liked as an owner.  Jim Irsay is.  And Jim Irsay is also loyal.  And while the tweet from Mort directly implies trading, it indirectly hints at the fact that Jim Irsay does not want to part with Peyton Manning at all.
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About Josh Wilson
Follow Josh on twitter @jwilsonWL, on Facebook at the Operation: Freedom page, or you can reach him by email at operation.freedom@yahoo.com.

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