Peyton Manning spurns Titans, intends to sign with Broncos

Monday, March 19, 2012 at 11:55am

He got away.

Peyton Manning won't return to Tennessee after all. The veteran quarterback has begun negotiations on a contract with the Denver Broncos.

Manning worked out for the Broncos on Friday, one day before he did the same for Titans officials.

The news ends a process that began nearly two weeks ago when the Indianapolis Colts waived the league’s only four-time most valuable player rather than pay him a $28 million roster bonus.

Manning is known to have interviewed with five different teams — the Broncos, Titans, San Francisco 49ers, Miami Dolphins and Arizona Cardinals. His interview with the Titans at their practice facility lasted nearly seven hours last Wednesday.

He worked out for the Broncos, Titans and 49ers late last week and, apparently, made his decision Sunday. His workout for Titans officials took place at Knoxville.

"I want to thank the whole organization for their efforts in trying to sign Peyton and also to Peyton for the time he put into the process," owner K.S "Bud" Adams, said. "Peyton called me [Monday] morning to inform me of his decision and obviously I am disappointed, because I thought we would be a perfect fit."

Of the teams involved in the process, Tennessee seemingly had the best situation at quarterback with veteran Matt Hasselbeck and Jake Locker, the eighth overall pick in the 2011 draft, under contract for multiple seasons.

Hasselbeck’s first season with the Titans was his best in four years and one of the most productive of his career. He started every game for the first time since 2007 and completed 61.6 percent of his passes for 3,571 yards with 18 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. He was sacked just 19 times.

In 13 seasons as the Colts quarterback (he missed all of 2011 due to injury issues) Manning averaged 4,218 yards and 31 touchdown passes per season. He threw for a career-high 4,700 yards in 2010.

Titans general manager Ruston Webster said multiple times in February that he felt good about the combination of Hasselbeck and Locker and planned to address other areas of the roster through the draft and free agency. That thinking apparently was altered a little more than a week ago when Adams publicly proclaimed his strong desire to add Manning, the former University of Tennessee star who remains one of the state’s most beloved sports figures.

"I ... want to commend Matt Hasselbeck and Jake Locker," Adams said. "They were thrown into a very difficult situation. Matt was very good for us last year; and at some point, we expect Jake to be our future franchise quarterback.”

The franchise’s efforts to land Manning became something of a statewide pursuit that involved local businesses and state government. Governor Bill Haslam was involved in the interview process last Wednesday, and the state legislature passed a resolution endorsing the attempt to sign Manning. Shoney’s and Nissan both unveiled promotions tied to the issue.

"Now that we move forward, I want our fans to know that our expectations haven’t changed – winning a championship is still the goal," Adams said. "I like our quarterback situation moving forward and we will continue to build the team through free agency and the draft with that goal in mind."

The pursuit of Manning has been the dominant story during the current free agency signing period, which began last Tuesday.

It now creates a new one; What, if anything, will Denver do with quarterback Tim Tebow, who led that franchise to the playoffs last season.


32 Comments on this post:

By: Jughead on 3/19/12 at 10:05

Hahahahahahaha--this is classic. Titanstards were having Peytongasms and put the condom before the whores.

By: Jughead on 3/19/12 at 10:07

C'mon--lets get our idiotic lawmakers to now pass a resolution to fly flags at half mast.

By: gdiafante on 3/19/12 at 10:08

LOL...the talk radio idiots were SO sure that he was a Titan last week...

2012 Titans suicide watch begins...

By: concretemike on 3/19/12 at 10:54

Now the Titans will have to make a new excuse for not winning the AFC South.......maybe because they don't have a dome......those pesky Texans.....Sunday isn't our day......let the excuses begin!!!!!!

By: yogiman on 3/19/12 at 11:13

A quarterback throwing the ball is no better than the receivers receiving the ball. He looks good, but he doesn't do the team much good.

By: TITAN1 on 3/19/12 at 11:25

gd, we have been waiting for you to grow up. I guess we have to keep waiting.

concrete mike, abused any dogs lately?

By: TITAN1 on 3/19/12 at 11:27

Jughead, I hope you get banned for your filth.

By: govskeptic on 3/19/12 at 11:41

As both a Peyton fan and Tebow fan I hate to see this! I feel pretty sure
Peyton wanted a new re-start without playing in this division against
both the Colts and others that he's played against for so long!
Best wishes.

By: BigPapa on 3/19/12 at 11:44

I guess all those "special reasons that everyone kept listing that Peyton "loved" TN aren't really all that special are they?

He played at TN, he LOOOOVES it here!
His Wife is from Memphis
Eli's wife is from Brentwood.
His father played for the oilers.
He has a house in Chattanooga.

It's so funny that by making it personal (the reasons he was coming) now that he's not you hear the UT folks saying "well this is just a football decision blah blah blah"

He went to the team that would pay him the most.

By: Jughead on 3/19/12 at 12:12

@TITAN1: C'mon, you like it and you know it. You can take the poster of Peyton Manning down from your bedroom ceiling now.

By: gdiafante on 3/19/12 at 12:13

I agree Papa...The Titans were never really in it, IMO. The team stinks and is not close to being Super Bowl ready. Plus, Denver has money to burn...

Now, how far back are the Titans in regards to FA? You gotta love Bud...he's like a lot of the fans...dumb as a

By: TITAN1 on 3/19/12 at 12:42

Never be as dumb as you., BTW, papa is a Titans fan. Well at least he has always CLAIMED to be. Really, he is too negative to be a fan of anything. Grow up, gd.

By: BigPapa on 3/19/12 at 1:17

I am a titans fan. But you and I see that differently.

You see being a fan as agreeing with a supporting everything the team does. (Essentially reducing your imput to: GO TITANS!!)
I think you can be a fan and be critical of your team when they do something stupid.

I think getting rid of fisher was a bad move, wouln't have drafted Locker either. I think chasing Manning was a waste of time as well

I agree with letting finnegan walk, and picking up Hasselback, and resigning of CJ.

By: TITAN1 on 3/19/12 at 1:31

BP, but you are critical 99% of the time. gd just complains about everything.

By: Rasputin72 on 3/19/12 at 1:40

I am sure that Peyton Manning wanted to come to Tennessee, but the Titans are an 8 and 8 franchise based on all historical data. We have 50 years to prove this. One Super Bowl and that was a loss. If you are interested in championships you do not come to Tennessee.

Bud Adams did a great PR job of looking to sign Peton but he knew that Peyton had no intentions of coming to Tennessee/ Peyton Manning paid homage to Tennessee by making them a finalist. He and Bud Adams both knew from the start that champions do not play for the Tennessee Titans.

By: gdiafante on 3/19/12 at 2:35

No Titan, I don't complain, I make fun of. I wouldn't expect you to know the difference. lol

There is a few reports that Peyton didn't want to come here because of the "circus" it would create. I imagine he meant the moron fans who camped out at Metro Center when he came to visit.

Now Clay Travis is whining on the air about how he will be rooting against about being childish...jeez...the entire fan base here is a joke.

By: Jughead on 3/19/12 at 3:15

Clay Travis is an ignorant, loud-mouthed nimrod who could not cut it as a lawyer.

By: TITAN1 on 3/19/12 at 3:17

Rasp, as usual, you are full of it.

GD, you miss the point about being a real fan of your hometown team. If Peyton became a Titan, I would be a big Peyton fan because he would be a Titan. See how that works, sonny. When the play for another team, why would I root for him? You are the one who is childish by always cutting down the Titans and their fans. Grow up, sonny, you are embarrassing yourself.

By: RTungsten on 3/19/12 at 4:16

$90mil for a guy who is 1 hit from being a TV commentator? No thank you.

By: govskeptic on 3/19/12 at 5:03

Peyton may have had a hint at what Denver would offer before he
ever left the Colts. That hint might have been why they could not come
to an agreement for him to continue. As to the Titans, I don't think
it was an all money decision but I'm guessing Bud had no idea
the Denver offer (if reporting is anywhere close) would be anywhere
near 90 million for 5 year contract. No way would he have paid
even that, much less more!

By: T-BONE on 3/19/12 at 8:30

OH PHOOTBALL GOD...Why has thou forsaken the "TIT"-TOONS and Nashville? We prayed unto to you and "KISSED" your holy spirit buttox and you let us down (as usual)! So you know where you can GO!

By: tomba1 on 3/20/12 at 1:49

Finally, were no longer waitin' on Pay Ton ! I can't fault him for going west to pal around with elway as, of the options on the table, that's probably the most fun situation for Pay Ton. Plus it gives elway a new playmate, the likes of which he has never had. I don't think anyone else could match the double-sided "boy toy" aspect of this. But after all of this hype and delayed free agency action, who else really won?

Perhaps the biggest winner, the Colts. By releasing Pay Ton when they did, they dodged a $28m hit and forced his suitors into somewhat of a 4 corner offensive game plan as to the free agency market. Their rivals had to sit on the sidelines just waitin' on Pay Ton while the other most needed players were picked up by others. So, regardless of what happens during the rest of the free agent period, the Colts will face some MUCH weaker opponents than they otherwise would have. Granted the Colts have their own problems but weakening the opposition while increasing the size of their $ war chest certainly helps.

Another winner, Pay Tons agent, who also represents SF Alex Smith and who knows how many others who may have been impacted by all of this. He faced what is probably a once in a lifetime opportunity. He cleverly manipulated the situation gradually interjecting new suitors as the process drug on thereby exposing his other clients to other "potential" opportunities as Pay Tons saga unfolded. He brilliantly protected his and his clients' interests and positioned them to profit regardless of what Pay Ton decided to do. Job well done.


The Titans.

Tim Tebow who, after being adopted and adored by the fans and management, is apparently being flushed down the drain by the same.

John Elway who has exposed his dark side of betrayal and deceit as pertains to Tebow. The fans will never turn on Elway but the ugly truth is there for all to see, and forget.

By: govskeptic on 3/20/12 at 5:59

Tebow would be far better off at some other team at this point. He had a
lousy contract at Denver anyway. In 2010 signed 3 yr 11.4 million contract
with 8.5 million up front the first year. Coach and management were
almost forced by fan base to use him at all. Out of the 3 teams Peyton
gave the most consideration, it's this reader's opinion of those 3
San Francisco will be the first to play in a Super Bowl game, if any
do anytime within next 5 yrs.

By: BigPapa on 3/20/12 at 6:33

Skeptic- Bud said he would pay "whatever it took" so you can't fault him for that.

If TN hadn't gone after him you guys would criticize bud for being cheap and NOT going for it. You can't play this both ways.

Listen people it's ALWAYS about the money. Athletes will say it's not, but in the end they always sign with the team that gives them a few more dollars.

By: dargent7 on 3/20/12 at 6:46

Guy's 37. 5 years? A QB at 42 is a joke.

By: dargent7 on 3/20/12 at 6:47

BigP: Just because Adams said he'd do "whatever it takes" doesn't mean he put up the $95. million. He probably offer half that and a Walmart gift card.

By: BigPapa on 3/20/12 at 8:09

Sorry but I'm not going to blame the owner because we didnt get the guy. I think we have to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Blame the player that chose to chase the dolla bill. I swear some TN Vol fans are like battered wives. They let Manning treat them like cr ap then make excuses for why he hit them.

By: BigPapa on 3/20/12 at 8:15

“I absolutely was going to pay him,” Bud Adams told Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean. “And I was going to pay him to be with us until he was ready to be buried. And I was going to take care of him. I was going to spend a lot of money on him. But he didn’t want that. He wanted to be somewhere else, and I can’t do anything about that.” - Bud Adams

So, no the "Bud Adams is cheap" doesnt fit.

By: jwk6179 on 3/20/12 at 8:15

Every member of the Nashville Sports Media (especially everyone on 104.5 The Zone) is making it sound like it was a personal insult to the city of Nashville, the Titans and all the Titan fans when Peyton Manning chose the Denver Broncos over the Titans. I've got news for you folks, it was a business decision, nothing personal at all. One of the members of the 3HL (which is a dumb name for a show that now airs during dinner instead of lunch) state he can't beleive that Manning chose the city of Denver over the city of Nashville. Do you think Steve Hutchinson signed with the Titans because they are in the city of Nashville or because he wanted to please the Titan fans. No, he signed with the Titans because they made him the best offer and it was what was best for him and his family. Do you really think Steve Hutchinson, Chris Johnson, Kenny Brett and any other Titan player gives one RAT'S ASS about pleasing the Titan fanbase?

By: NewYorker1 on 3/20/12 at 8:17

Since he didn't pick the Titans, lets hope he is hit really hard in his first game and is permanently paralyzed and can't ever play again.

By: TITAN1 on 3/20/12 at 8:53

NewYorker, I pray that nothing ever happens to you like you just described.. I would have been a Peyton fan if he signed with the Titans, just as I am a fan of all the Titans that make up the TEAM. But, since he didn't, he is just another player on another team and I hope we beat the team he plays for, but I don't want to see anyone get hurt.

By: GUARDIAN on 3/20/12 at 1:58

I think had Fisher still been with the Titans Peyton might of made a different choice. Peyton liked Jeff and he may not of trusted Bud Adams because of several things. I also heard from a very good source that Adams was going to pay Peyton more than he got from Denver in addition to the lifetime deal. GUARDIAN-GOD, COUNTRY, FAMILY and FRIENDS. The American Way.