On Friday, CBS Sports' Mike Freeman posted an article saying that there were two shadow teams interested in signing former Colts quarterback Peyton Manning. Later that day, ESPN's Chris Mortensen, who is represented by the same talent agency (CAA) that reps Manning, tweeted that the San Francisco 49ers were interested in signing Peyton.
Today, we found out from ESPN that Manning actually conducted a workout for the 49ers, and the workout involved him tossing footballs to head coach Jim Harbaugh. Peyton has reportedly conducted similar workouts for the Denver Broncos and the Tennessee Titans.
Now, for Colts fans, the idea of Peyton Manning playing for Jim Harbaugh is a dream come true. Unfortunately, it was a dream they hoped would happen in Indianapolis, not the Bay Area.
Think about it: Captain Comeback (Harbaugh) lost his job in Indianapolis due to age in 1998, was replaced by a 23-year-old Peyton Manning, a first overall pick that year. Fourteen years later, Manning loses his job in Indianapolis due to age and injuries, and he goes to play for Jim Harbaugh. Meanwhile, in Indianapolis, Manning is replaced by a first overall pick who was recruited and coached by Harbaugh while at Stanford, Andrew Luck.
I mean, come on! It doesn't more connected or "storybook" than that!
"[49ers G.M.] Trent Baalke laid low, he did the research, Jim Harbaugh threw with Peyton Manning," Young said. "They didn’t get in the front pages. They know that they are the best answer for Peyton Manning. They know they have the best defense in the league to offer. They know they have the offensive weapons. They know they have Jim Harbaugh. They know all the pieces in place for Peyton Manning. It is the best opportunity for Peyton Manning. They knew it, and they waited for the wannabes to exhaust themselves, and then they came in right at the end, and that’s why I think they’ll probably land him at this point."
Personally, the 49ers offer the best roster for Peyton to win with. Better than Denver, and certainly better than Tennessee. The Arizona Cardinals and the Miami Dolphins are already out of the Manning Derby.
I also think that, for Colts fans, SF is the best place Peyton can go. It's geographically far away from Indy. It's in another conference. It unites two individuals that Colts fans have a lot of emotional connection to.
I still think Peyton will sign with Denver because, at the end of the day, he doesn't want to block his brother, Eli Manning of the world champion Giants, from getting to another Super Bowl. I believe, as does former Colts running back Marshall Faulk, that Peyton wants a Super Manning Bowl.
Manning has reportedly told the teams interested in his services that he will make his decision Monday or Tuesday next week.