Peyton Manning is my favorite QB off all-time and has been a fantasy deity ever since I can remember. Nowadays he’s looking more and more like Emmitt Smith when he played with the Cardinals. I hate to say it but I think the time has come where he sits on the couch and tells his kids stories about how he scored 4 touchdowns in a single game at Polk High. It’s hard for me to call the retirement of a player who had the best statistical year of any QB in the history of the NFL just two years ago but father time is getting the best of him. There is only one way that the marriage of the Gary Kubiak and Peyton Manning can work out this season. Kube’s has to do what every other head coach and offensive coordinator of Peyton has done in the past, which is to sit back, shut-up and let the Sheriff go to work.
The collapse of Peyton came in the San Diego game last season where he attempted to block for C.J. Anderson on a run play and endured a quad injury. I’m uncertain of how this affected his throwing but he wasn’t the same after this game. Before the injuries (Games 1-7) Peyton had 2,134 passing yards, 22 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. After the injury (Games 8-16) he accumulated 2,593 passing yards, 17 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Five of those seventeen touchdowns came in a single game against Oakland. He went from being Superman in the first half of the season to squeaky voice Peyton Manning with cable to finish out his 2014 campaign.
I’ve been following Peyton Manning for quite some time and this might be the first time where I’ve seen the running backs struggle in his offense. From Marshall Faulk to Edgerrin James, to Joseph Addai to Knowshown Moreno, all of these guys were running like Bo Jackson in Tecmo-Bowl. It’s almost a guarantee that if you play behind Peyton that you’ll have an extremely productive year. This has not been the case so far. I don’t know if the offensive line is this bad or they aren’t understanding how to zone block. Either way the Broncos will be in trouble later in the season if Peyton is forced to throw the ball 45 times a game. Don’t give up on C.J. Anderson just yet. He was your second round pick and will get back to a vicious ground attack very soon. The organization wants to lessen Peyton’s passes in order to keep him as fresh as possible for the postseason. Don’t worry fantasy owners, he’ll still be a top ten fantasy QB.
As a true fan of Peyton Manning, I would love to see him leave the game in the exact manner that Jerome Bettis exited. Here are the keys to the sheriff riding off into the sunset. Keep him in the shotgun. I understand Kubes wants to incorporate this new offense and it’s very admirable of him. But this isn’t the Peyton Manning of old, wearing burnt orange and white with 102,455 fans screaming “Rocky Top”. He’s just not capable of being under center and doing naked bootlegs running left. After watching three snail-pace bootlegs, I came to the realization that this offense is a stupid as trying to surf in Nebraska. Get the running game going, keep Peyton from under center and let him command the offense like he’s done for the last 6,222 days. Fantasy managers around the world would appreciate it.