With how much Peyton Manning meant to Indianapolis and the Colts, you have to wonder if they regret watching him dominate in Denver. Sure, Andrew Luck is one of the top 5 QBs in the league, and if he stays healthy he has a very bright future. And Lucas Oil Field is certainly The House that Peyton Manning Built. But what if he was still getting it done in a Colts uniform?
Does Colts Owner Jim Irsay have second thoughts?
Imagine the atmosphere on Sunday night for the Peyton Manning Bowl. It’s his first return to Indy as a member of the opposition.
Tony Dungy, knows Peyton Manning best, after having coached him for so long with the Colts. He knew what was going on when Manning was facing next surgery/rehabilitation.
“He saw the best doctors in the world on this. He got assurance from everybody that he wasn’t at risk,” Dungy, now an analyst for NBC said.
“You still don’t know until you go out there and take a hit but he had every idea in his mind that he would be playing at a high level.”
Indianapolis was a basketball city. And Peyton Manning made it a football city without question. Irsay had to let Peyton Manning go two years ago and at the time a lot of people thought it was a no brainer because Andrew Luck was waiting as #1 overall in the NFL Draft. $35 million was owed to Peyton with his age and injury being a concern.
Tony Dungy: “Well I can tell you that it wasn’t a no-brainer. I was on the phone with Jim Irsay probably five or six times over the course of maybe a month as he was leading up to that and he knew all the factors that you just enumerated there. But Jim also had a great deal of loyalty, you know, Jim was a young boy when his dad traded Johnny Unitas so he knew the ramifications of those types of decisions.”
Fellow NBC Analyst Cris Collinsworth opined:
“they knew nothing but winning 10 to 12 games every year and picking at the bottom of the draft and so when you got a quarterback who – 36-37 whatever he was – and you have to say all right he’s got a bad neck, he’s had all these surgeries, how many more top end years could we possibly get out of the guy?”
And the choice between Andrew Luck and RGIII who could be that franchise guy for the next 10 to 15 years, you understand why the Colts made the decision they made on Peyton Manning.
“you always have to put yourself in a position what would I have done given the health uncertainty of Peyton Manning at that time I would have done exactly whatever it is they did,” Collinsworth said.
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net, an affiliate of Fox Sports. He’s also an analyst for multiple news talk radio stations across the world; with regular weekly segments on NBC, CBS and Fox Sports Radio. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks) , Facebook and RSS feedPowered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks