Peyton Manning refutes report he won’t play backup

Brock Osweiler. Come on, say it again: Brock Osweiler!

Peyton Manning refutes media reports that he won’t play backup behind the Denver Broncos average starter, and I don’t buy it whatsoever.

Peyton Manning is a Michael Jordan at the quarterbacking position. Would Michael Jordan have embraced a role as Steve Kerr’s backup? Kobe Bryant yielded a starting position to Shannon Brown? Not a chance in hell.

When you’re great, you want to play and you should play. It’s when your not so great, that you retire; retirement allows you the chance to control your career destiny, not a coach or a haphazard upstart, hoping for their shot under the lights.

Look, I’m not saying Manning was any better than Osweiler. Through nine games, Manning posted a career worse 67.6 QBR and nine touchdowns to 17 interceptions. A change was an obvious move, for a fading glory behind a 39-year-old body.

Osweiler has been more controlled, predictable. Which makes sense. He doesn’t get the leash Manning had/has, because he hasn’t earned it. Through six games, the Arizona State product has posted an 84.9 QBR with 8 touchdowns to four picks.

This isn’t about whether it was or wasn’t the right choice to bench Manning. It is about Manning’s words. A great player is never comfortable playing backup. His/her ego is too big, too praised, to give into being average.

If anything, it takes the heat off Osweiler, who I’m sure has felt uncomfortable more than once this year. Having an all time great watch you from the sidelines is both exhilarating and I’m certain, humbling.

My hope is Manning retires. Gives it up, goes into acting. He’s incredibly funny and has done enough, in my opinion, to be placed among the top five quarterbacks in league history.

 

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*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports