This past 12 months have been an absolute roller-coaster ride for the Denver Broncos. The Broncos went through the attempted Kyle Orton trade, a slow start to the season, the Kyle Orton benching, Tebowmania and much, much more. Many Bronco fans are finally looking for some consistency and normality in the franchise, and I believe that the franchise is about to find exactly that.
Peyton Watch 2012 has been highly documented. Peyton can't eat dinner, throw a football or go to a town without someone implying it is part of his decision. Over the past week, Peyton has visited the Broncos, the Cardinals, the Dolphins and the Titans. Each fanbase has their valid reasons as to why Peyton would fit in their organization. Let's take a look at each organization's reasoning as to why Peyton will sign with their team.
Denver: Denver has to be an appealing destination for Peyton Manning. The Broncos not only won a playoff game last year, but they have an extremely young, up-and-coming team. Another big draw for Peyton would be an opportunity to play for a veteran defensive-minded coach and Hall of Famer John Elway.
Tennessee: As they say, home is where the heart is, and while Peyton isn't from Tennessee, his wife is, and he is a legend in the Volunteer state. There is a lot of familiarity in Tennessee and they have some nice young talent within the organization.
Arizona: This location doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I guess their reasoning would be Larry Fitzgerald and head coach Ken Whisenhunt. Many Cardinals fans seem to ignore the fact that Arizona has one of the worst lines in the NFL, an oft-injured back and a weak group of receivers (besides Fitzgerald).
Where will Peyton be in 2012?
Miami: I personally think Miami is out of the Manning sweepstakes. It has become apparent in the past couple of days that it is owner Stephen Ross that wants Peyton Manning, not head coach Joe Philbin. The fact that the Dolphins just traded away Brandon Marshall doesn't help, either. He has a house in Miami, but that is about where the reasoning ends.
It all comes down to Tennessee and Denver, in my opinion. Both organizations have great, unique offers for the future Hall of Fame quarterback, but Denver has one advantage—their respect of the process.
Peyton Manning is a very private individual, which is one of the reasons that nobody has heard much out of the Manning camp over this free-agency tour. If it was Peyton's choice, there would be no helicopters following him, no media coverage and no endless discussion about his decision. That is why Denver has to be the favorite.
Bud Titans owner Bud Adams has done nothing but rant and rave to the media all week. Adams' approach to grabbing Peyton's attention was ill-advised, in my opinion. On the other hand, Denver approached this situation with extreme class. Denver made their pitch to Manning and offered him everything they could. Rather than blowing up the media, they have chosen to sit back and wait. Their respect towards Peyton Manning and the process has to be a big draw for Peyton.
Peyton Manning is a class act, it is as simple as that. Denver has approached this free-agency tour with more class than the other three organizations. Arizona is pushing the decision so they can cut Kolb, Miami is already lining up visits for Flynn and Bud Adams has been a media distraction since they entered the sweepstakes. Meanwhile, the Broncos have sat back and waited. Their patience will be rewarded when Peyton Manning is donning that orange and blue in 2012.