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Peyton Manning Rumors: Report Says Titans Preparing for Visit from QB

INDIANAPOLIS - JANUARY 02:  Peyton Manning #18 of the Indianapolis Colts looks to pass the ball while defended by Jacob Ford #78 of the Tennessee Titans during the NFL game at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 2, 2011 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Eric BallFeatured ColumnistMarch 12, 2012

We have another bidder in the Peyton Manning sweepstakes.

The free agent QB plans on visiting the Tennessee Titans sometime this week according to Michael Lombardi of the NFL Network:

NFL sources tell me that the Titans are preparing for a Peyton Manning visit in the next day or two...

— Michael Lombardi (@michaelombardi) March 12, 2012

The connection here is a pretty obvious. Manning played his college ball at the University of Tennessee, where he was a star for four years in the late '90s.

This will be the third official visit Manning has had on this tour around the league he is currently conducting. He spent Friday and Saturday with John Fox and John Elway at the Denver Broncos facilities. Mike Klis of the Denver Post reported that the visit went well.

Then he took his private jet to Arizona, where he spent all day Sunday.

With Manning rejecting calls from the Kansas City Chiefs and Seattle Seahawks, according to Klis, now the Titans are throwing their chips to the center of the table.

Owner Bud Adams has made it loud and clear that he wants No. 18 (via NFL.com):

He is the man I want. Period. And the people that work for me understand that. They know who I want. I want Mr. Manning with the Titans and I will be disappointed if it doesn't happen.

This is a bold statement to make.

Second-year pro Jake Locker showed signs of why he was the No. 8 overall pick, and at the age of 23, he seems to have a bright future ahead of him. Matt Hasselbeck is still a capable starter as well.

Instead, now Locker knows his owner is willing to throw him under the bus the minute a better option is available. If the Titans don’t land Manning, it’s going to be rather awkward around the Tennessee facilities.  

Then again, if they land the four-time MVP…an 8-8 team in 2011 is going to be a Super Bowl favorite in 2012. 

 

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