Peyton Manning Trade Rumors: Why Indianapolis Colts Won't Trade QB

Wes ODonnellFeatured ColumnistFebruary 7, 2012

BALTIMORE, MD - DECEMBER 11:  Peyton Manning #18 of the Indianapolis Colts looks on from the sidelines during the second half against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on December 11, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Many people are wondering why the Indianapolis Colts are willing to let Peyton Manning walk away for free.

If he leaves and regains health, they will have let a future Hall of Famer and the face of their franchise walk away with a few years left in his arm.

That doesn't happen very often.

Unless the Colts choose to keep Manning and give him what he needs to make another run at a Super Bowl, they have to cut him loose.

In fact, they have $28 million reasons to cut him loose before March 8.

The Colts must have medical reasoning to cut Peyton loose, and many expect it to happen in the coming weeks. If they wanted to trade him they'd have to pay the $28 million first. In order to even consider that, Manning would have to be healthy.

Manning isn't healthy. He isn't receiving the bonus, and he isn't going to be wearing a Colts uniform next season either.

Plain and simple, they'll be parting ways and there will be no trade—Manning will walk for free.

There are plenty of rumors as to where he'll end up too. Teams like the Jets and Cardinals—both heavily invested in young quarterbacks—have already expressed interest.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - JANUARY 08:  Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Indianapolis Colts passes the ball in the first quarter against the New York Jets during their 2011 AFC wild card playoff game at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 8, 2011 in Indianapolis, I
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Other teams like the Redskins and Dolphins, two teams without quarterbacks, are also heavily interested.

The Colts have no control over where he goes once he's released, though.

Sooner than later, Manning will be a free man.