We all knew it was coming, every single one of us. It was just a matter of when. When came and went on Wednesday afternoon in Indianapolis. In the in-between time, memories, interspersed with tears, were shared on a brightly lit podium in Lucas Oil Stadium.
Peyton Manning was finally cut loose yesterday by the Indianapolis Colts and owner Bill Polian, after a successful 14 year marriage and one Super Bowl ring. And Manning, by 4 pm EST, had quickly become the most coveted-free agent in the history of the National Football League.
His first move as a free agent?
A flight to South Beach. A move that probably made the guys at Manning to Miami pretty damn happy. Or excited. Or something along the fine line of obsession and fanaticism.
Not so fast. I know what you’re thinking – but a meeting with the Dolphins and General Manager Jeff Ireland has not happened – yet. In fact, it was a pleasure trip, not a business one, to his South Beach condominium.
Although I don’t believe him, (how could you?) Peyton says he hasn’t given any thought to where he will be playing in 2012. The only thing he knows is that it won’t be in Indianapolis.
What I think Peyton actually means, is that he hasn’t given too much thought as to where he will land.
His former Colts counterpart and down-field threat, Reggie Wayne, has taken quite the opposite approach to his free agency, making it fairly clear that he would like to end his NFL career in Miami. Besides the ideal year-round football climate and the draw of South Beach that can’t be found in downtown Indianapolis, Miami is also Wayne’s collegiate home, where he donned the Green and Orange.
Wayne was not shy in sharing that he sees Miami as a perfect ending to a long NFL career, for not only himself, but Mr. Peyton Manning as well. How convenient.
Can you imagine the potential numbers Peyton would produce? (Granted that he is back to #18 prior to his neck issues) One of the greatest signal and audible callers the game has ever seen would have Reggie Wayne, Brandon Marshall and Reggie Bush at his disposal.
Outside of those potential on-field numbers, the Dolphins would legitimate add star power. Star power puts fans in the stands. If you need a an example, just ask the Miami Heat front office how star power is working out for them and their ticket sales.
Speaking of star power and sarcasm, I’m sure former Dolphin great Dan Marino wouldn’t mind putting on the Dolphins uniform one more time, with a chance to finally get that ring.
Maybe he could be the holder on PAT’s? Of course, then he would have to remember the one golden rule: Laces Out, Dan!