Peyton Manning’s days as an NFL player may have come to an end, but that doesn’t mean the bad thing to him because six squads in all will be the beneficiaries of the future Hall of Famer’s support: the Broncos, Colts, Giants, Texans, Lions, and Dolphins.
“I kind of look forward to this year being a fan of a lot of teams, people that I have connections with,” Manning told reporters Friday. “I’ll be pulling for Brock. Of course, I’m going to be a huge New York Giants fan, but I’ll be pulling for the Broncos and the Colts. I’ll be pulling for Adam Gase and Jim Caldwell, the head coach of the Lions. Coaches and players I’ve played with and competed with. Being a free agent, if you will, this year, to be able to pull for a lot of teams. I’ll be pulling hard for Brock. I know he’s going to have a great year.”
The relationship between Manning and Osweiler appeared to have taken an awkward turn last season, when the latter started seven games — his first career starts — in place of Manning, who had gotten injured and had played the worst football of his career before then. Despite the fact that Osweiler went 5-2 in his starts, Broncos Coach Gary Kubiak turned back to Manning in the regular season finale, and the then-39-year-old proceeded to ride a stellar defense to his second championship and a dream finish to his decorated career.
Manning will be pulling for his former teams in the Broncos and Colts, Osweiler and the Texans, Caldwell and the Detroit Lions, Eli Manning and the Giants and, finally, Gase, his former offensive coordinator who now coaches the Miami Dolphins. Peyton alluded to pulling for other players and coaches on other teams as well. But one thing stands out here that raises the question: Who is he going to root for when the Texans and Colts meet twice a year? Or, better yet, when the Texans come to Denver to play the Broncos?