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“I can’t see myself missing Peyton more than I might miss Ross McLochness, or Ronnie Pudding, or Danny Upham, or Little Danny Schindler.”

[ 38 ] March 7, 2012 |

Well, he never really added much value to the Colts anyway.

It’s weird that cutting a player who apparently was worth upwards of 10 wins a year to his team is the rational move, any yet it really is.

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  1. c u n d gulag says:

    The old model is gone – the one where the high draft-choice rookie QB sits on the bench and and watches the vet, and learns for a few years, before taking over the team.

    The new model is to throw them out there somewhere in the first year, regardless of how bad the OL, RB’s, and receivers are.

    Now, it’s trial by fire – into the crucible you go!

    I think this has ruined a lot of good QB prospects.

    Now, I don’t think Luck will be one of them. He’s smart enough to learn to read defenses quickly, has good arm strength, and mobile is enough to get away when the pocket breaks down.
    And lord knows he didn’t have Jerry Rice and Chris Carter to throw to in college, so he can make do with average receivers for awhile, if need be.
    And I think he’s psychologically tough enough to withstand the inevitable comparisons to Manning – one of the best regular season QB’s in history.

    But, one never knows, do one?

    • Njorl says:

      I think this has ruined a lot of good QB prospects.

      David Carr could have been a decent QB if he had a chance. When you learn that hanging in there and taking a shot while delivering a perfectly thrown pass results in an incompletion, you stop looking downfield, and start looking for a good place to fall. The Texans trained Carr to be sacked safely. He learned it very well.

      • mpowell says:

        This is a rare case and Carr’s college pedigree was actually quite weak for a no 1 pick. The problem with the old model is that, first, it’s way too expensive. And 2, there is little to no evidence that sitting a guy on the bench causes him to become a better QB faster than playing him. Outside of Carr, I can’t imagine who you’d pick as being ruined by starting too early.

        • Njorl says:

          Ryan Leaf was never going to be what he was hyped to be, but I think he had the talent to play in the league in some capacity. At the end of his rookie year, that was no longer true.

      • I was thinking the same or similar with respect to Tim Couch. And it is relevant to the situation faced by the current Browns: do you draft a highly rated QB prospect when you have a bad team?

    • Bill Murray says:

      in the 1970s 5 of the 8 high draft choice QBs (top 10 selection) started more than a couple of times in their first year. The 3 were Jack Thompson, Bert Jones and Mike Phipps

      for 2001-2011 the numbers are 15 of 19. The 3 who didn’t start immediately were Michael Vick, Philip Rivers, JaMarcus Russell and Jake Locker

      so many more QBs taken high and starting early a little more often as compared to the 70s

    • efgoldman says:

      Troy Aikman started as a rookie, and went 0-11. The ‘Boys drafted Emmitt Smith the next year, and went 7-9.

  2. rea says:

    Manning may have amde a lot of money, but management stills sees him as a worker–to be disposed of like a used piece of Kleenex when damaged.

    • SEK says:

      This. I often wonder about his commercials, in which he smiles his big smile and spouts some corporate line. Part of me thinks he knows what he’s doing, because he couldn’t pull off the comedy if he didn’t, but the smarter part of me sees a live version of Gob Bluth, and waits for the first few notes of “The Final Countdown” to sound so the show can start in earnest.

  3. Furious Jorge says:

    “Well, I’m sure I’d feel much worse if I weren’t under such heavy sedation.”

  4. LosGatosCA says:

    In sports the production machines are people. You don’t invest a fortune in a valuable machine at the end of its useful life. The general manager speaks fondly of the machine as it’s being replaced but there’s no sentimentality about replacing it.

    However, in sports the production machinery, being people, is less predictable than buying a new computer with more memory, greater clock speed, more cores to process more data more quickly. The new models have no guarantees to perform to spec or anywhere near the performance level of the older model it replaced.

    Fans don’t see it that way, because it’s emotional to them. But Bill Walsh epitomized the values of a sports general manager when he said that he would rather move out a player a year too early than a year too late. And when that year or even two comes with at least the equivalent performance risk (of injury/degraded physicality for Manning vs inexperience for Luck) but a $28M price differential it’s not a hard choice for a businessman to make. Especially, when your team has just gone 1-15.

    Luck will not be Ryan Leaf, Andre Ware nor is he likely to be the next Peyton Manning. But in saving $28M he doesn’t have to be. He could very well be the next Bert Jones or Steve Bartkowski however, which will be a huge disappointment to the Colts fans, but a very likely outcome.

  5. mpowell says:

    This is really only a rational move if you think you can’t actually get equal value for that #1 pick or if you don’t place a premium on winning the super bowl (and are willing to risk some very crappy post Manning seasons to get there). If Luck is really that valuable the Colt should be able to turn him into quality starters which would be quite a substantial addition to a team that was already a playoff contender with a healthy Manning. But I think that the reality is that you can’t get value for that pick (or maybe it is just much more a of a crap shoot than any holder of the pick is willing to acknowledge).

    • Erik Loomis says:

      I do not believe the Colts are a playoff contender with a healthy Manning. This year proved that the Colts were falling apart all over the field, the victim of a decade of terrible drafts.

      • timb says:

        Beg to differ.

        Nonetheless, what’s shocking to me is that they could not get anything, not even a 7th round pick for Manning

        • Njorl says:

          Why would anyone trade for that contract when they can get him without the $28 million signing bonus and without giving up anything?

          Teams are willing to pay Manning if he can play. He’ll get a high non-guaranteed salary. No one is willing to pay him a $28 million signing bonus to play 3 games and retire due to injury.

      • Furious Jorge says:

        Agree. I don’t see how you can say a team is otherwise a playoff contender when losing their quarterback knocks them down to 2-14. That’s a loooong way from a wild card slot, and while I don’t see a lot of the Colts on TV, I have difficulty imagining that Manning would have been worth a minimum of 8 wins all on his own.

        2-14 is just a bad football team.

        • timb says:

          I think you guys underestimate what a QB means to an NFL team. Wayne and Clark didn’t become worthless overnight.

          An entire defense built upon speed to contain the passing attack of team trying to play catch up was not only crushed by injuries to almost every DB, but ill-suited (to say the least) to stop the run.

          A healthy Manning and fewer injured d backs were the difference between a Conference playoff game and 2-14

          • Froley says:

            Most teams are a QB injury away from being a .500 team at best. For example, Matt Schaub was lost in Week 10 and the Texans went 3-4 after that (including a loss to the Colts). And that’s a team with a defense significantly better than the Colts D. As timb says, the Colts couldn’t keep a DB on the field (being their strong safety is as dangerous as being Spinal Tap’s drummer).

          • Anonymous says:

            Please refer to reigning MVP Tom Brady being knocked out for the season in the first game of 2008. Behind journeyman Matt Cassel, the Pats went 11-5 and barely missed the playoffs. The glory years of the Colts are over. Their team is aging and the replacements have not been drafted. Manning knows this and Luck will learn. Wherever Pm lands is an instant contender if his neck stands up.

      • Ronnie P says:

        And this move means they can make personnel decisions geared toward the long term, not just what might get them to the SB next year (which is the situation they would face if Peyton were still around).

    • Scott Lemieux says:

      You’re also assuming that Peyton Manning is still Peyton Manning. I wouldn’t bet anything I was afraid to lose that he’ll ever take another snap in an NFL game, and even if he’s back and as good as ever he’s going to be one hit away from a career-ending neck injury. You’d be crazy to trade Luck away.

      • timb says:

        I work with/for people who have cervical fusions with that sort of nerve damage and, granted my people are at the bottom of the economic ladder, but I have never seen anyone whose nerve damage “regenerated” like Manning is saying.

        The chances he can throw a ball with any sort of accuracy and power are slim in my non-medical opinion.

  6. timb says:

    The question for Indianapolis residents is after peyton leaves will he come back after three days? The first Jesus did it; we’ll see if football jesus can do it. If not, there will be some mighty disappointed true believers here in Indianapolis

  7. witless chum says:

    To me, the more interesting decision than Peyton is that Irsay decided to can Bill Polian and destroy all his works. The Polian model worked for a long time for Indy. The previous models worked extremely sporadically for the Colts. As a Lions fan, my default assumption is that the owner is a moron, so maybe I should entertain the possibility that Irsay isn’t one, but this doesn’t seem too smart to me.

  8. Please, let Manning go to Seattle…so when he busts, ‘hawk fans can finally move on to complaining about something other than Super Bowl officiating.

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