If the 49ers want to seriously contend for Super Bowl moving forward, they have to take a chance on Peyton Manning.
The 49ers were two muffed punts away from a shot at winning a sixth Super Bowl championship.
The team exceeded everyone's expectations with a strong defense and a head coach, Jim Harbaugh, who instilled confidence in the much-maligned quarterback, Alex Smith.
Smith improved by leaps and bounds this past season, but when it came down to putting the New York Giants away in the NFC Championship, with either a touchdown or even a field goal, Smith could barely complete passes.
Now a good portion of the credit deserves to be handed to the Giants for disrupting Smith, but a better quarterback in that situation would have done what was necessary to put the Giants away.
Signing Manning would be beneficial for all parties involved, except for maybe the Indianapolis Colts.
Manning will bring the obvious to the Niners: Super Bowl-winning experience, statistics, MVP’s, leadership and no shortage of confidence.
Manning will bring the experience that will help the 49ers have what it takes to take that proverbial next step to the Super Bowl.
He’ll pay dividends off the field as well.
Merchandise sales would be up, ticket sales would go up and just overall awareness of the franchise again would do a great deal the bottom line.
The 49ers give Manning a very good running attack with Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter that can take pressure off Manning and give less attempts, which means less times he will have to get hit.
The Niners also bring probably the best defense in the league with Pat Willis and Navarro Bowman just to name a few.
With a strong running game and a very good defense, gives Manning a situation where he can enhance a team without having to do too much.
Other franchises like the Miami Dolphins and the Washington Redskins need a lot more than just Manning to be competitive, which Manning will almost have to be a bit of savior for the franchise, which could backfire.
But in San Francisco, he will be joining a team that already has a lot in place, including tight end Vernon Davis. He won’t have to do too much.
Sure, the pressure from the public for him to return to his usual form will be immense and would be made greater on a team that is not that good. But on a talented team like the 49ers, the pressure will be eased a bit because he will have talent all around him.
San Francisco fans may all of a sudden love Smith for his remarkable playoff run, which he deserves a ton of credit for, but you don’t have many chances to sign a future Hall of Famer and make another run at Super Bowl.