The Decision: Looking at the Arizona Cardinals’ Chances of Landing Peyton Manning

The Decision: Looking at where Peyton Manning may end up if he becomes a free agent… today, we look at the:


I have not been secretive about it – the Arizona Cardinals is where I want Peyton Manning to land, and where I think he should.  

They have what he needs to win – a superstar receiver, a coach who will give him his space, and a good enough team to win with a healthy Peyton. 

Heck, this team was 8-8 being quarterbacked by Kevin Kolb and John Skelton.  Imagine what Peyton could do.  The last time Peyton played with a receiver as good as Fitzgerald, he led them to the playoffs (oh, wait…).  

The Cardinals are in the worst division in football.  They have the Seahawks, Rams, and 49ers along with the Cardinals.  The Seahawks are another very possible landing spot for Peyton.  The Rams have a good young QB in Sam Bradford, but they are still a few years away.  The 49ers are a very, very good football team, but I would take Peyton to win that division.  The 49ers will also be featured in this series as a possible landing spot for Manning. 

Also, Peyton has never had a returner like Patrick Peterson.  Not even close.  Peyton would love to get some help from special teams.  The Cardinals defense is good enough.  

A big issue is the coach.  Ken Whisenhunt will give Peyton the room he wants.  The Cardinals just hired Frank Reich as their wide receivers coach.  Reich worked with Manning for the last six seasons.  Russ Grimm is a great offensive line coach. 

The Cardinals also play in a dome, and I have to imagine that is a big deal to Peyton.  

They select 13th in the 2012 NFL Draft. 

So what makes this decision hard? 

First off, the Cardinals have Kevin Kolb.  He is owed $7 million on March 17th.  If Peyton is released on March 8th (I think it will happen before), the Cardinals would have basically a week to determine whether or not to sign Peyton.  I really cannot see them keeping both Kolb and Manning.  The quarterbacking decision is easy, but the timing and health makes it difficult.  

That is really the only big negative towards the Cardinals.  I firmly believe this is the best spot for Peyton.  

Chances of landing Manning:                      7/10 

Chances of playoffs with healthy Manning:                       99% 

Chances of winning super bowl with healthy Manning:   60%


About Josh Wilson
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2 Responses to The Decision: Looking at the Arizona Cardinals’ Chances of Landing Peyton Manning

  1. 18chronicles says:

    Everybody thinks it is so hard to release Kevin Kolb, honestly it is a no-brainer, regardless if Peyton is going to Cardinals or not. Kolb, like most “few” hit wonders QB, was just talked up by those “analysts”, coupled with the need for franchise QBs, he had become a hot commodity. Matt Flynn most likely will be another one. we are not saying that they are bad, but giving franchise QB money to those QBs are just plain silly. John Skelton on the other hand, played well by comparison. Ideal situation is for Cardinals to sign Peyton & have John Skelton backup & learn behind him. Skelton is not the next guaranteed big thing like Luck is, so he will have no say whatsoever in whether he plays or not. Chance of Peyton being healthy and play well is higher (not sure how much higher but based on all actual medical experience of football players, chance is pretty darn good) than him not being able to reclaim his form. It is a gamble Arizona should make.

    • I also thought Skelton played much better than Kolb. The problem is that the Cardinals have a deadline with Kolb much like the Colts do with Manning. I agree that it is an easy decision to bring in Manning over Kolb, but it is all about timing (and, if Kolb gets his $7 million bonus and Peyton goes to Arizona, it takes away money that could be spent on other players instead of a bench-warming quarterback).

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