Is Peyton Manning the next quarterback for the Los Angeles Rams? According to a report from ESPN, Rams’ management is having “internal discussions” about acquiring Manning should he decide to play football next season. Manning has remained mum publicly on his intentions for the 2016 season, although he is under contract with the Denver Broncos for one more year. Most in and around the NFL believe, however, that Sunday’s Super Bowl will be his final game as a member of the Broncos.
On Tuesday, the Inquisitr reported that many rumors were indicating Peyton would hang it up after Sunday’s game, but that cat was not let out of the bag during Manning’s Media Day session in front of hundreds of reporters. The 39-year-old quarterback said he’ll deal with any retirement decisions “after the season.”
“No, I haven’t made my mind up. I wouldn’t know that until after the season. Whatever cliché you want to use, I’m staying in the moment. That’s what I’ve done all season.”
Manning also addressed his postgame conversations with New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady, as reported by Yahoo Sports, with whom Peyton reportedly broached the subject as well.
“That was not pre-planned. It was a spontaneous reaction. Sometimes you want to tell somebody something man-to-man, it’s better than telling them via text or even a handwritten letter, or seeing them at a banquet and saying, ‘Boy, it sure was great playing against you.’ I told Brady the same thing previous to telling Belichick. I understand there’s people [nearby] but what I said was true. This could be it. I’m aware this could be it and I wanted to tell both of them I really have enjoyed these games. It’s been part of my football life and both of those guys have been part of good for me and not so good for me and so I took the time to tell them.”
As far as the Rams and how Peyton Manning would fit into their plans? For one, they are in need of a quarterback and have dealt with inconsistency at the position since Kurt Warner left. And secondly, the team has been relocated to Los Angeles, and luring a high-profile name such as Manning will bring an extra sparkle to a team that’s been searching for an identity for more than a decade.
Here is how Rams’ head coach Jeff Fisher described his quarterbacks at his end of season press conference, as captured by the team’s official website.
“I have confidence in Case (Keenum). Case is an incomplete pass and a field goal away from potentially being 5-0 as a starter. He’s managing things well. He worked really well with (Assistant Head Coach/Offense) Rob (Boras) and (QB Coach Chris) Weinke over the last few weeks and I feel good about his development. I think he’s got a chance to be a really good quarterback. I spoke with Nick (Foles). We’re going to give Nick a chance to compete. There will be competition when we come back, and I think we have a promising young talent in Sean (Mannion) that will be in the mix as well.”
Despite Peyton Manning’s deteriorating skills, his experience far outweighs that of Case Keenum, Nick Foles, and Sean Mannion combined. His star is obviously much brighter as well.
The Rams traded former number one overall pick Sam Bradford to the Eagles in exchange for Foles last offseason, but Foles was eventually benched and gave away the starting job to Keenum. Peyton missed seven games this year, opening the door for Brock Osweiler to see his first significant time under center in his NFL career. Osweiler is a free agent but is expected to remain in Denver to take over the role beginning next year. Manning would likely not accept a backup job and instead search for another team should he decide he feels healthy enough to continue. Or, if Denver wins on Sunday, he could very well ride off into the sunset like his boss, John Elway.
[Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images]