Peyton Manning is one of the greatest NFL quarterbacks of all time so it would make sense that a quarterback-desperate organization like the Cleveland Browns would be interested in the signal-caller.
That sentence probably brings images of Manning donning the No. 18 in Cleveland Brown and Orange, but that’s an absurd thought. Manning rode into the sunset after winning a Super Bowl with the Denver Broncos, why in the world, at 41-years-old, would he go to Cleveland of all places?
Believe it or not, that thought is not as farfetched as one might initially think, but it doesn’t involve Manning lacing up his cleats again. No, it involves him joining the Browns’ front office in a big way.
That’s what was reported a few weeks ago by NFL Insider Albert Breer, who said that Browns’ owner Jimmy Haslam could very well call on Manning to run things at the top:
But, if coaching and scouting [aren’t] aligned in the right way the answer will be to go in and bring in a football czar. You remember Denver had to do that in 2011, their answer was John Elway. We know Manning has a desire to play that kind of role. I’m not sure whether or not he’s ready to jump out of retirement back into the football world again, but I do know that [he’s] a very close confidant of Haslam’s. Haslam’s a huge Tennessee booster and Manning would probably be the first guy on his list if he were looking to bring in a guy in to head the organization and set the agenda.”
That has to be a very tempting thought for Browns’ fans, especially considering the team’s woes at quarterback since basically the beginning of time. Who better than a quarterback like Manning to scout, draft and train up “the answer” at quarterback for the Browns?
That all sounds great, and that’s not to say Haslam won’t eventually end up making that call, but it doesn’t sound like Manning is thinking about returning to the world of professional football anytime soon.
This, according to Tom Withers of the Associated Press:
Manning has been retired for only two seasons at this juncture and it’s not as if he’s lacking for attention — he’s a national spokesman for more than one major brand.
Retirement has to be good for Manning, though one has to wonder if the football bug will start biting the former quarterback sooner rather than later.
And if so, perhaps the Browns could end up being a legitimate suitor.