Somewhere in Denver today, Tim Tebow is Tebowing, praying for serenity after the Broncos have landed the big one — Peyton Manning.
With the move, Tebow becomes the new quarterback on the trading block, giving the Miami Dolphins another opportunity to bungle a deal.
Along with the Broncos, Manning visited with the Miami Dolphins, Tennesse Titans and Arizona Cardinals in his search for a new team after being released by the Indianapolis Colts two weeks ago.
The Dolphins were initially thought to be the front-runner to sign No. 18, but Miami’s dysfunctional front office pushed Manning in a northwest direction.
Manning and ESPN had the sports world on pins and needles during his heavily publicized visit to Denver. Helicopters equipped with cameras hovered above a Broncos’ team vehicle in OJ Simpson-esque fashion as head coach John Fox escorted Peyton to the Broncos facility. The Adam Schefter’s of the world pegged the Broncos as the new team to beat for Peyton’s services, with the thought that GM John Elway would be able persuade the quarterback to set up shop in the mountains.
In typical Elway fashion, he delivered in the 4th quarter in the race to sign Manning, ending Tebow’s brief career as a Bronco. Tebow-mania is offically dead at Mile High Stadium.
Manning’s decision to play in Denver instantly makes John Fox’s team the early pick to win the AFC West, and poised to be a serious Super Bowl contender. Equipped with a stifling defense and a strong supporting cast on offense, Manning may be the final ingredient needed for owner Pat Bowlen to earn his third Lombardi Trophy. The Broncos are not done in free agency, and will look to add an experienced tight end to Manning’s arsenal of receivers that include former first-rounder DeMaryius Thomas and up-and-comer Eric Decker. Can you say Dallas Clark?
It is all but a foregone conclusion that Indianapolis will select Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck as the first overall pick in next month’s draft, setting the stage for constant comparisons next season between Manning his replacement in Indy. As Colt’s owner Jim Irsay continues his expansive overhaul to the Colt’s roster and coaching staff, Manning will be molding his new team into championship form.
Don’t be fooled by the sappy, polite breakup between Irsay and his former franchise quarterback. Manning will like nothing better than to fill his former owner full of regret for cutting him after 14 years of service. Andrew Luck will have his hands full trying to fill the cement-block shoes Peyton left behind.
Manning is back, and is back for blood. And another ring.
Good luck, Luck.