Peyton Manning Will Be the Biggest Free Agency Addition in NFL History
The Denver Broncos gave Manning a five-year, $96 million contract this offseason and, in the end, he'll be worth every penny.
If Broncos fans thought former quarterback Tim Tebow was a natural leader, wait until they see Manning run the show. Even though he never played a single snap in 2011, Broncos GM John Elway knew what he was doing when he signed the future Hall of Fame quarterback.
The best part about his move to Denver is that it was never supposed to happen. No one ever thought that Manning would have ever played for another team besides the Indianapolis Colts when he finished the 2010 NFL season with 4,700 passing yards, the highest total of his career.
Unfortunately, his career came to an abrupt, but temporary halt when it was announced that he had numerous operations on his neck. After missing the entire 2011 season and having doubt cast against him, Manning will play with a certain fire unforeseen in the NFL.
Manning's true presence on a football field became evident in 2011, when the Colts were so bad without him they earned the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NFL draft.
With quarterback Andrew Luck available and $28 million coming Manning's way, the Colts figured they would just start over and released the best thing to ever happen to the organization. During that time, the public perception of Manning's abilities shifted from all-time great to nearly extinct in a matter of months.
Seemingly overnight, Manning went from being one of the best quarterbacks to ever touch a football to a modern-day Frankenstein who wasn't worth his weight in horse apples.
How many Super Bowls will Peyton Manning win with the Denver Broncos?
After a circus-like media-palooza, Manning landed in Denver where he's going to turn a decent team into a great one. After all, he wouldn't have gone to a team that he didn't believe would contend for the Super Bowl over the next five seasons. Now all Manning has to do is turn a bunch of rag-tag receivers into Cinderellas.
The weak AFC West is another reason why Manning picked Denver. With all due respect, the division is the Broncos' for the taking in 2012—the Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers are unpredictable while the Kansas City Chiefs are trying to rebound from an injury-plagued 2011 season. There's no reason why the Broncos shouldn't win the West in 2012.
Manning simply makes everyone around him better. The minute he stepped onto the field in Denver, his fellow teammates' Madden 13 rankings got a boost. Don't think that he'll let his men slack in the slightest—it's all things football from this point on for the blossoming Broncos.
Love him or hate him, you have to respect the guy. Peyton handled his unfortunate situation as professionally as possible, and that he's being relatively quiet now should scare the snot out of his opponents.
The fact that Manning ranked only No. 50 in the NFL Network's Top 100 poll will only add fuel to his fire. Expect nothing short of napalm from Manning in the near future—he's out to prove to everyone that he's the all-time greatest to ever play the game.
The 36-year-old quarterback is saving his best for last in the NFL. Considering the colossal coverage Manning draws from the media, he'll win NFL MVP for the fifth time in 2012. In less than five years, the Broncos will have won back-to-back Super Bowls, much like Elway did is his day.
With his legacy somewhat tainted at the moment, Manning wants to finish his career with a storybook ending.
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