Peyton Manning’s family can finally sit back and relax now. It gives them a piece of mind knowing that Peyton can call Denver, Colorado home – at least for the next few NFL seasons. NFL fans everywhere watched all 32 teams this past 2011 season closely. The Denver Broncos made a transition with their starting quarterback from Kyle Orton to Tim Tebow. Meanwhile, in Indianapolis, Peyton Manning sat in on team meetings, went to every football practice, and watched his Colts have a 2-14 record season.
It was a struggle for Manning, someone who has always worked hard to not only play well and encourage his teammates, but to win. According to Seth Wickersham, “He thinks more like a coach: He can’t control the most important thing – winning games – so he tries to control everything else. It’s just how he’s wired. That’s how the least talented natural athlete of three boys from a sports family has willed himself to become arguably the greatest quarterback ever. If a serious injury damages the psyche of a typical athlete, it must have a waterboarding effect for Manning.”
No more waiting. Last week, as cameras flashed and new football contracts were written, Manning became a Denver Bronco. Diehard Manning fans might say that his recent trip to the Angus Barn in Raleigh, North Carolina was the biggest influence on him choosing Denver – who knows. John Elway, Executive Vice President of Football Operations for the Broncos, and his team of Broncos leaders worked hard to show Manning exactly how much they cared about him by flying to NC a few weeks ago.
Long time NFL fan, Rodd Baxley, claims that Elway was the biggest influence on Peyton’s decision. Baxley said, “He was a successful quarterback too, so he sees eye-to-eye with Peyton.” Spring practices will soon begin for the Broncos QB and his new teammates – some who are still getting their feet wet in the NFL and others who have been in the game for several years. The other AFC West teams are speaking up about this conversion from Tebow to Peyton as QB. Dennis Allen, recent defensive coordinator for the Broncos, took a job as head coach with the Oakland Raiders and when he learned about Manning’s move his heart sank. “First head-coaching job, taking on a new challenge, and you’ve got to take on one of the best that’s ever played twice a year?” No one can predict what will happen for the Broncos organization this season much less the NFL, but it’s apparent that Elway and Peyton, along with the rest of Broncos organization, want to win football games.
Only time will tell what will happen in Denver, but Manning is ready and willing. “I am thrilled to be here, and I am looking forward to meeting my new teammates and doing everything I can to help this franchise win another Super Bowl,” stated Manning in his first press conference as a Bronco.