Blog Entry

Manning's next contract to be incentive-laden?

Posted on: February 5, 2012 1:45 pm
Brees talks to the media about his Offensive Player of the Year Award while Manning announces the NFL Player of the Year. Indianapolis, February 4, 2012. (Ryan Wilson,

By Ryan Wilson

Peyton Manning, who has been in the news almost as much as his brother this week, finally made a public appearance Saturday night at the NFL Awards Show. He didn't say anything new about his future in Indianapolis -- Manning was there to present the 2011 NFL Most Valuable Player award -- although reports Sunday from ESPN's Adam Schefter indicate that should the Colts and Manning part ways in the coming weeks (and that looks like a real possibility), the future Hall of Fame quarterback would be willing to agree to an incentive-based contract for little or no guaranteed money.

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The thinking: Manning would find a new home as quickly as possible, put his Colts playing days behind him, and get on with the rest of his career. Schefter says that incentives could include roster bonuses due on the first day of the regular season, or bonuses tied to playing time.

A source tells that such measure won't be necessary because Manning, completely healthy or not, will be in such demand that those teams interested in his services will set demand. If the Dolphins' owner Stephen Ross truly is "infatuated" with Manning, and the Redskins and Daniel Snyder are similarly intrigued, that's reason enough to think that he won't have to concern himself with performance-based incentives.

As it stands, Manning is still a member of the Colts. He's due a $28 million roster bonus on March 8 but unless something changes between now and then, there's no way owner Jim Irsay makes good on that payment given that Manning's health is still a huge question.

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Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: February 5, 2012 4:21 pm

I hope not

In the modern world, incentive-laden contracts don't work, because cheap owners order coaches to take players out of the game if they are too close to making their incentives.  There is always the possibility of collusion with medical staffs, too.  Not only that, but teams that are one QB away from the Super Bowl don't play badly enough to get the first overall draft pick.  Since they will be drafting Andrew Luck, they won't be helping Peyton win now.

I really wish Peyton would retire before he gets hurt so badly that it affects his quality of life down the road.  If he does play, though, it needs to be for a contender: not a rebuilder.


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