Manning casts his lot with Broncos
The Denver Broncos got their man.
Pending final contract negotiations, Peyton Manning will join John Elway’s Broncos with hopes of winning another Super Bowl.
So much for Tebowmania.
Still to be decided is what happens to last season’s quarterback sensation, Tim Tebow.
The Broncos and Manning’s agent, Tom Condon, spent Monday working out parameters of a deal expected to be worth about $95 million over five years after the NFL’s only four-time MVP called Elway, the Broncos’ revered QB-turned-executive, and told him he had decided to come to Denver.
Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams also said Manning let him know that he had picked the Broncos. Adams released a statement Monday confirming the Titans were out of the running and later said to the Tennessean: “He called me himself and told me he wasn’t coming, that he made his mind up to go with Denver.”
Besides the Titans, the San Francisco 49ers had been a finalist in the chase for Manning, who turns 36 on Saturday and missed all of 2011 because of multiple neck surgeries.
Despite being sidelined all of last season, Manning’s success in the past – the Colts averaged a 12-4 record from 2001-10 – made him by far this offseason’s top potential signing and perhaps the most desired free agent ever.
He was wooed to Denver by Hall of Fame quarterback Elway, who led the Broncos to two Super Bowl championships and now serves as their vice president of football operations.
Elway, who retired from the game after winning his second straight title in 1999, never sounded all that convinced Tebow was the answer at the sport’s most important position and now could trade the enormously popular but flawed QB.
Manning was cut loose March 7 by the Colts. The move marked the end of an era, a 14-year alliance between the team that drafted Manning No. 1 overall and the QB who brought Indianapolis from football irrelevance to the 2007 Super Bowl title and a second appearance in the NFL championship game three years later.
But with Manning’s rehab continuing, the Colts decided it was time to rebuild from top to bottom, and they are expected to take Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck with the top pick in April’s draft.
Around the league
Former Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback David Garrard has signed a one-year contract with the Miami Dolphins and says he was told he’ll be given a shot at the starting job. The 34-year-old Garrard, a starter for Jacksonville from 2005-10, didn’t play last season. He was released five days before the opener by the Jaguars. … The Kansas City Chiefs have formally announced the signing of free agent quarterback Brady Quinn and veteran right tackle Eric Winston. Terms for the two deals were not disclosed. … Free-agent safety LaRon Landry has agreed in principle on a one-year deal with the Jets, filling one of New York’s most pressing needs. Landry spent his first five NFL seasons with the Washington Redskins after he was picked No. 6 overall in the 2007 draft out of LSU. … The agent for free agent running back Mike Tolbert says his client has signed a four-year contract with the Carolina Panthers. He had 490 yards rushing and 433 yards receiving on 54 catches last season with San Diego. … A person with knowledge of the negotiations said that wide receiver Donte’ Stallworth has agreed to a one-year contract to return to the New England Patriots. Stallworth spent one season with the Patriots in 2007 when they went 18-0 before losing the Super Bowl to the New York Giants. … Browns kicker Phil Dawson has signed his one-year tender as the club’s franchise player. … Seahawks offensive lineman Jarriel King was arrested in South Carolina last month and faces a charge of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. King attended South Carolina and was not drafted last spring. He appeared in one game for the Seahawks, but remained on the roster throughout the year. He was released by the Seahawks Mondayafter the team learned of his arrest.