The NFL season is approaching its most exciting, momentous day of the year — with a hometown team involved, no less — which means, hey, let's start thinking about the off-season. The biggest NFL off-season story, without question, will be: What are the Colts going to do about Peyton Manning? We Need to Talk About Peyton, people. Specifically, we need to talk about whether or not he's coming here. Thus, we introduce our Manning-to-Jets-O-Meter, a regular momentum tracker, on a scale of one to ten, rating the possibility that the future Hall of Fame quarterback might wear green next year. Let's take a look at today's news.
The big story yesterday was the Colts' firing of coach Jim Caldwell, ending his mostly unmemorable tenure atop the food chain in Indianapolis. (He made a Super Bowl, lost it, and then was pretty much mocked as being ineffectual until he was fired.) It's a full-on housecleaning in Indy, with Ryan Grigson in charge of a revamped front office. The whole place is upside down now.
Which is good, because the decision about what to do with Manning is looming, particularly now that they've committed to drafting Andrew Luck with the No. 1 overall pick. The Colts, should they decide to trade Manning, will have lots of suitors, from San Francisco (assuming you don't think Alex Smith is suddenly awesome now) to Arizona to even Denver. But the Jets are high on that list, even though they might not have as much to offer as those teams.
There's a school of thought that says the Jets are too chaotic for Manning, but that just sounds like typical end-of-a-disappointing-season backbiting. Fact is, if Manning's traded, no matter what Rex Ryan says about being devoted to Mark Sanchez, they'll be one of the top bidders. Now we just have to wait to see if the Colts officially put Peyton on the market. Until that happens, the Manning-to-Jets-O-Meter rests at four.