Peyton Manning: Why Denver QB Will Disappoint Fans in 2012
It’s tough to be a nay-sayer of Peyton Manning, especially when he is such a great individual to go along with his talent. But, someone has to be for a moment.
A healthy Manning is one of the best quarterbacks in the history of the NFL, but he may still disappoint fans in 2012 for reasons the Broncos faithful know too well.
Manning’s road to recovery has been well-documented over the last year. He has silenced doubters with his journey and appears ready to handle the rigors of another NFL season.
I’m going to hope and assume Peyton Manning stays healthy for all 16 games this year. I trust his arm strength and accuracy are as good as ever, but Manning could still disappoint fans for reasons that are entirely out of his control.
Peyton Manning had an unimpressive stat-line from his first preseason game in Chicago. Manning went 4-for-7 for 44 yards and an interception.
To anyone who didn’t see the game, that’s a subpar performance at best, especially with the interception. But what the stats don’t show is the ball bouncing off the Broncos’ receiver (Brandon Stokley, I believe) for the interception.
You can bring in the best, most accurate quarterback in the league, but if your receivers can’t catch the football, he's useless. You might as well just run the football.
Wait, didn’t the Broncos basically resort to that last year?
The Broncos finished last season with 28 dropped passes, according to the Washington Post. That’s the fourth-most in the AFC.
That’s not even that big of a number, so what’s the problem?
The problem is the Broncos two best receivers, Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker, both finished in the bottom 20 of the NFL in drop-rate.
Thomas drops 13.5 percent of his passes. Decker drops 17 percent.
That was with Tim Tebow at quarterback, not Manning.
Peyton, I’m apologizing in advance on behalf of all wide receivers.
Better invest in some duct tape-lined gloves or Manning’s stat-line may disappoint the Broncos faithful.
Over-exaggerated Fan Hype
Manning is good. He’s great. He may even be the best ever. But he alone will not bring the Broncos a Super Bowl.
Broncos fans are a passionate group; growing up outside Denver, I saw it first-hand.
When Tebow came to town, the Broncos were going to win titles.
When Kyle Orton came to town, the Broncos were going back to the late-1990's success.
When Elway came, the Broncos were building a dynasty. I’ll give Elway some significant credit; he did win two for the Broncos.
Broncos fans haven’t looked back since.
Will dropped passes haunt the Broncos in 2012-13
But what many forget is that it took Elway 15 years to get his first Super Bowl championship.
Manning doesn’t have that much time and he unfairly receives those expectations. His career proves he has what it takes to be a championship-caliber quarterback, but the Broncos are still a few pieces short.
Manning is a great step in the right direction, but Broncos fans have to put their expectations into perspective.
The team is still a few weapons short of championship caliber. Manning will be good, possibly even great, but realistic expectations should still be exercised.
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