In NFL history, the two free-agent signings that stood above all were Reggie White to the Packers and Drew Brees to the Saints.
Peyton Manning to the Broncos makes it a top three.
Last year, the Broncos won the AFC West with a staggering amount of Tebow-fueled luck in close games. Manning was a free agent and John Elway was ready to shake things up. He knew Tebow wasn’t delivering a championship contender, and he lured Manning away from other suitors such as San Francisco, which seemed at the time to be in much better shape to compete for a championship.
Once again, Manning saw the play develop well before it happened.
An easy 38-3 win against the Chiefs, combined with a horrible Texans collapse in December, means the road to the Super Bowl in the AFC goes through Denver. The Broncos are the first seed. Manning completed 23-of-29 passes for 304 yards and three touchdowns before being pulled early, setting up one of the great MVP debates with Manning and Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson.
Manning finishes the regular season with 4,659 and 37 touchdowns. Considering he was out all last season recovering from neck surgery, his comeback isn’t much less impressive than Peterson running for 2,000 yards after blowing out his knee.
The Broncos are positioned well to make it to the Super Bowl. Their running game has complimented Manning well. Receivers Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas both went over 1,000 yards this season. Thomas’ incredible one-handed touchdown catch against the Chiefs was another reason he should have been in the Pro Bowl. The defense, led by Von Miller, has been impressive all season. The special teams are capable of getting a big play.
The reason the signings of White and Brees were so historic was because they brought long-awaited Super Bowl titles to the Packers and Saints. Manning might do the same for the Broncos this year.
Outside the Game from Yahoo! Sports:
Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
• J.J. Watt lines up against kids from Newtown
• Cain Velasquez shows dominance in UFC 155 | Slideshow
• Carmelo insists he and Amar’e Stoudemire can coexist on the court
• GrindTV.com video: 17-foot python crashes Florida birthday party