Tag:Indianapolis colts
Posted on: January 29, 2012 1:30 pm
 

Curtis Martin thinks Jets should pursue Peyton

"I’m not saying anything against Sanchez," Martin said. ... "If Manning was available, I would go after him" (US PRESSWIRE)

By Ryan Wilson

Everyone, it seems, has an opinion on Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez. One camp supports the guy and wants him back in New York (head coach Rex Ryan's current stance); the other camp prefers anybody but Sanchez, although if they had their choice, Peyton Manning would be at the top of the list.

Manning, of course, is still a member of the Colts and recovering from neck surgery that kept him out for the 2011 season. But his time left in Indianapolis may be down to days or weeks.


Ryan spoke recently about both quarterbacks: “I can’t talk about Peyton Manning. He’s on some other team right now. But Mark Sanchez is the future of the Jets. He’s a great quarterback and again, I can’t wait to get it going."

Which is pretty much what Ryan has to say. And no matter how many times he repeats himself, there will be those people who think there are better options out there. Take former Jets running back Curtis Martin. He's all for Manning relocating to New York should he become available.

“That’s a great opportunity,” said the Hall of Fame finalist Saturday in an interview with ESPNNewYork.com's Rich Cimini. “I’m not saying anything against Mark Sanchez, but Peyton Manning … I have a lot of respect for the guy. I played against him for a number of years. I wouldn’t care who was on my team -- if Peyton Manning was available, I would go after him.”

Martin qualified by saying that he'd pass on Manning if Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady or Drew Brees, but that's it.

“I’m very bullish on taking that chance,” Martin said. “I don’t care if he’s 38, 36, whatever, I would be interested in taking that chance. At 35, 36, I’m definitely interested. You’re literally talking about one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game. Him having a year off, the type of competitor Peyton Manning is, I think he’s going to come back and surprise everyone and be even stronger -- if he can come back.”

And that very well may be, it's just that it's not clear where Manning will be playing.

Cimini writes that Jets owner Woody Johnson, during a recent interview, didn't rule out the possibility of pursing Manning. Cimini added: "There are growing indications that the Jets, despite public support for Sanchez, are monitoring the situation and will explore it if he’s released."

Seems reasonable despite Ryan publicly supporting Sanchez several times this offseason. It was Ryan, after all, who announced that he expected offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer to return to the Jets if he didn't land a head-coaching gig. Neither happened, and the former was less surprising than the latter.

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Posted on: January 29, 2012 10:59 am
Edited on: January 29, 2012 10:59 am
 

Irsay denies Manning decision was made weeks ago

Irsay denies he's already made a decision on Manning. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

On Saturday we brought you the report that a decision on Peyton Manning's future was made "weeks ago," and that Jim Irsay and the Colts were prepared to move on without No. 18 before they ever hired Ryan Grigson as the team's general manager.

That news spread like wildfire and eventually made its way into Irsay's ears, which means that his opinion made its way onto his Twitter feed.

"No he hasn't been released nor was a decision reached weeks ago," Irsay tweeted on Friday night.


Of course Manning hasn't been released: Manning wouldn't be talking about himself as the Colts quarterback if he'd been released. And he'd probably already be negotiating with other teams.

And perhaps a decision, in the official sense of the word, hasn't been reached yet. Irsay has until March 8 to make a final call on Manning and jumping the gun on his final decision wouldn't be prudent, particularly considering that Manning could make progress, physically, over the next month or so.

Neither would admitting that Manning's done in Indy immediately before the entire world turns its collective football-watching eyes onto the Colts hometown for the next week plus.

And maybe Irsay's simply leaning strongly one way and giving himself the option to flip-flop as the deadline nears.

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Posted on: January 28, 2012 6:23 pm
Edited on: January 28, 2012 6:32 pm
 

Report: Colts made Manning decision 'weeks ago'

The Manning decision was reportedly made "weeks ago." (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

On Friday, Peyton Manning and Colts owner Jim Irsay released a joint statement that pointed out their desire to "dispel any misconceptions" about their relationship. It was meant to prove that, even if Manning's not staying in Indy, the two can co-exist with the Super Bowl in town.

The likelihood of Manning playing in Indy in 2012 seems slim, at best. According to Jason LaCanfora of the NFL Network, it's an absolute zero proposition, as the decision to cut bait on Manning next year was made "weeks ago."


"According to sources who were involved in the Colts’ GM search, the organization was planning to move on from Manning weeks ago, well before this public squabble between the quarterback and his owner," LaCanfora said Friday. "So Friday’s joint statement won’t be changing a thing."

Irsay said prior to hiring new GM Ryan Grigson that he (Irsay) would be the one making the decision on Manning, not the new general manager. It makes a lot of sense that he'd have a strong idea of what he'd do with Manning before hiring a GM though, because he'd want said GM to be on board with his decision.

And if Irsay made up his mind weeks ago, the public sniping and "campaigning" actually makes more sense. No offense to LaCanfora, but if he knows about Manning's imminent departure, there's a strong chance Peyton knows about it too.

Meaning: the Manning-Irsay exchanges aren't those of two people hoping to make up. They're the exchanges of two people who already know they've broken up and are just waiting to see which side their collective friends take.

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Posted on: January 28, 2012 2:17 pm
Edited on: January 28, 2012 2:55 pm
 

Report: Bruce Arians hired as Colts OC

AriansBy Josh Katzowitz

Only a scant few days after former Steelers assistant Bruce Arians supposedly retired from coaching,it sounds like he has a new job.

According to a tweet from XTRA 910’s Mike Jurecki, Arians “is likely to become the next coordinator of the Colts.” Later, ESPN's Adam Schefter wrote that Arians has agreed to the job and will fly to Indianapolis on Monday to "to review and sign [the] contract."

So much for retirement, eh?

Well, it sounds like that’s not exactly what happened at the end of Arians’ tenure in Pittsburgh, especially since reports have emerged that Arians’ expiring contract would not have been renewed and that team president Art Rooney II didn’t give Arians a reason why the team was letting him go.

But the release of Arians might cause Pittsburgh more problems, because an obviously-displeased quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said he will march up to Rooney’s office and figure out why Arians wasn’t retained.

Pagano, the Ravens defensive coordinator, matched wits with Arians twice last season, and Baltimore held Pittsburgh to a combined 27 points in dealing the Steelers two losses.

The two also coached together with the Browns from 2001-03, so there should be plenty of familiarity between the two.

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Posted on: January 27, 2012 2:44 pm
Edited on: January 27, 2012 5:25 pm
 

Irsay, Peyton issue statement: No 'hard feelings'

Manning and Irsay released a joint statement on Friday. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

Last night we chronicled the third step in the Jim Irsay-Peyton Manning semi-feud that began out of an interview Manning did on Monday. Irsay called him a politician and Manning responded by clarifying his comments and backing away from the center of the storm.

Now the two have, quite oddly, issued a joint statement. (You'll remember these from the halcyon days of the lockout.)


"We would like to dispel any misperception that there might be any hard feelings between us," Manning and Irsay said in a joint statement released by the team. "Since 1998, we have enjoyed a great relationship, based upon mutual respect and trust. We have always been able to talk and address matters we’ve faced over the years, not just as owner and player, but as friends.

"We had a long talk today and we want to assure Colts fans everywhere that we are both committed to maintaining our close relationship and to working together through any challenges the future may bring."

Now, without applying an ill-fitting metaphor, doesn't this kind of sound like parents addressing kids right before a divorce? ("We still love each other, but ...")

The Manning Saga

Maybe it is -- if during the long talk Manning and Irsay basically acknowledged that Peyton's going elsewhere, there's a good chance they've found some resolution to their issues. Or maybe Irsay doesn't know if he's paying Peyton or not quite yet; it just seems obvious that he won't.

Regardless, while this is a weird move, it's also a smart one: the NFL media is descending on Indianapolis in three days and the timing of Irsay's barbs on Twitter were terrible, particularly given how omnipresent he'll have to be with the NFL's biggest party going down in his city for the next seven days.

This statement should do at least a little bit to quell all the questions about the relationship he has with Manning these days.

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Posted on: January 26, 2012 9:02 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2012 10:11 pm
 

Manning doesn't want Irsay talk to get 'personal'

Manning says he doesn't want things to get 'personal' with Jim Irsay. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

It's been an odd week for the Colts leading up to everyone and their brother arriving for the Super Bowl. First, there were Peyton Manning's comments on Monday night about how weird a place Lucas Oil Stadium had become with the changes to the Colts organization, among other things. Jim Irsay didn't like what Manning said, and called the quarterback a "politician" who was "campaigning" in his interview.

Manning has responded, via comments to Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star, and he's taking the high road.

The Manning Saga

"At this point, Mr. Irsay and I owe it to each other and to the fans of the organization to handle this appropriately and professionally, and I think we will," Manning told Kravitz on Thursday night. "I've already reached out to Mr. Irsay. I wasn't trying to paint the Colts in a bad light, but it's tough when so many people you've known for so long are suddenly leaving. I feel very close to a lot of these guys and we've done great things together.

"It's hard to watch an old friend clean out his office. That's all I was trying to say."

Manning likely knows his time is done in Indy. He has to. But as with his comments on Monday, he's not stirring up his dirt when it comes to what he thinks the Colts will do with his contract.

"I just want to keep rehabbing and working hard, and when the time is right for Mr. Irsay and I to sit down, I look forward to a healthy conversation about my future," Manning said. "I've worked too hard and have such great respect and have so many great relationships inside the building and out, and it's incredibly important that those remain."

Manning also knows how different his legacy in Indy could be depending on how he exits stage right. Which is why he doesn't want things to get personal.

"I want to separate the personal and the business," Manning told Kravitz. "I've seen it get personal in other situations, and I don't want that to happen here."

A perfect example of this is the Brett Favre saga that went down in Green Bay. Things got personal. Things got ugly. And fans in Green Bay hated Favre after he left.

Manning is a smart dude, and he obviously has a ton of love in his heart for Indianapolis and the Colts organization. But he's also smart. Even if his comments on Monday were "campaigning," they weren't part of any type of negative campaign.

Irsay fired the first salvo and now Manning's walking away. If the Colts owner chooses not to do the same things won't get heated, but they will get awkward.

And it's already gotten personal.

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Posted on: January 25, 2012 11:00 pm
 

Pick-6 Podcast: Predicting Peyton's next team

Is Peyton done in Indy? And if so, where where he land in 2012? (Getty Images)

By Will Brinson & Ryan Wilson

On the latest Pick-6 Podcast...

It's the second biggest storyline of the week: where will Peyton Manning play in 2012? That would've been a silly question six months ago but much less so now. The Colts have the first-overall pick in the April draft, owner Jim Irsay has cleaned house, and Manning admitted recently that he had no idea about his future. 

Assuming the Manning era is over in Indianapolis, where his NFL career began in 1998, where might he end up? You'll have to listen to find out.

Other quarterback-related topics on the show: 
  • What should the Ravens do with Joe Flacco -- extend him this offseason or let him play out the final year of his rookie deal?
  • And what about Ravens offensive coordinator Cam Cameron -- should he stay or go?
  • With Alex Smith fresh off a 13-3 season in San Francisco, should the 49ers bring him back, and if so, for how long (they drafted Colin Kaepernick in the second round of the 2011 draft)? 
  • Which names top the list of soon-to-be free-agent wide receivers?
  • And finally, a look ahead to the storylines and matchups for Super Bowl XLVI.
All right, let's get to this...

(Did we mention that you should subscribe to the podcast via iTunes? And if you can't listen to the podcast below, download it here. And if you'd like to keep working while listening in your browser, pop that puppy out in a new tab here.)


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Posted on: January 25, 2012 5:58 pm
Edited on: January 25, 2012 6:14 pm
 

Report: Dolphins would pursue Peyton Manning

The queue for Manning's services starts ... now. (Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

There's still one game left in the 2011 season, but for the 30 NFL teams who have now moved into the 2012 offseason, the wheels of change are already in motion. Earlier this week, Peyton Manning told the Indianapolis Star that while he has no intentions of retiring he also doesn't know if the Colts will bring him back. It was a shocking admission from the man responsible for two Super Bowl appearances, one Super Bowl title and a 141-67 record (.678 winning percentage) in 13 seasons, including a 3-13 effort as a rookie in 1998.

The queue for Manning's services is already forming. Two weeks ago, CBS Sports' Charley Casserly said the Cardinals could be interested (although it would require some logistical gymnastics). On Wednesday, the Miami Herald's Armando Salguero wrote that the Dolphins will be all-in on Manning, too.

"A team source e-mailed me this afternoon that the priority is Manning. This coincides with news out of Mobile, Ala., where the Senior Bowl is going to be played Saturday. A league source there tells The Herald's Barry Jackson that the Dolphins have shown no interest in Flynn as of yet -- not even informal interest.

"Now, teams are not allowed to show formal interest in soon-to-be free agents at this time. But at those Senior Bowl practices, where agents and team personnel departments mingle on the sideline, it's common for preliminary signs of future interest to be displayed. In fact, it's almost expected."

After the Dolphins hired former Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin last week, conventional wisdom was that Miami would immediately be in the Matt Flynn sweepstakes. Unless the Dolphins front office shares a fantastic poker face, that doesn't appear to be the case.

As Salguero notes, "The club believes a healthy Peyton Manning is simply a better gamble than an unproven Matt Flynn. Flynn is younger and will be cheaper (although not by a lot) but clearly the Dolphins are more drawn to the idea of a proven NFL performer -- despite his advancing age and greater risk of his neck injury resurfacing."

In general, betting that a quarterback in his mid-30s, still recovering from serious injury, and likely on the downside of a Hall of Fame career can resurrect a rudderless franchise is a fool's errand. But the Cardinals caught lightning in a bottle with Kurt Warner and he led them to a Super Bowl. It's not unreasonable to think that Manning could have similar success in the right system. Of course, the tough part is finding where that might be.

But one thing seems more likely with each passing day: the Manning era in Indy could be over. A ridiculous notion six months ago, much less so just six weeks out from when the organization is set to give Manning a $28 million roster bonus.

Whatever happens this spring, one thing is certain: should Manning become available, there will be plenty of quarterback-needy teams lining up for his services.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com