Wednesday, January 16, 2013

5 comments Filip Bondy Thinks the Jets Should Have Signed Peyton Manning Against Manning's Will

(Rex Ryan to Peyton Manning) "Peyton, it's either your brains or your signature that is going to be on this contract."

(Peyton Manning walks out of the room, rather risking death than playing for the Jets)

Sports columnists love to second-guess. It's one of their favorite pasttimes. When things go wrong for a professional or college team certain sports columnists know EXACTLY what that team should have done five months ago to make sure things didn't go wrong. If any professional or college team needs advice on what personnel moves they should make, simply wait three months and a sports columnist will be glad to say what that team should have done. Hindsight is wonderful. Filip Bondy does that today (okay, not "today" because this article is a little older) and he is actually correct in what he writes. He writes the Jets should have signed Peyton Manning this past offseason and that would have been nice. Every NFL team should have signed Peyton Manning. Unfortunately, life is not a fantasy draft, so the Jets couldn't just force Manning to play for them, instead Manning would have had to choose to play for the Jets. In fact, Manning took the Jets out of the running for his services early in his free agency. I'm not entirely sure he would have done that. These are just small details to Filip that his solution to the Jets' woes may not have been feasible. If the Jets had just thrown a bunch of money at Manning, he would be in a Jets uniform right now.

Soft-focus your brain, if that is still possible in the age of high-definition television. Imagine for a moment that Peyton Manning is the Jet quarterback, having signed a five-year deal with Mike Tannenbaum back in March.

I'm imagining this...and not really seeing this as something that would have occurred. Peyton may not have wanted to compete with his brother in New York, Peyton didn't want to play for the Jets, and I don't know why if given the opportunity he would have chosen the Jets over the 49ers or the Broncos, who were both playoff teams last year. Yes, money talks. I am not a mind-reader, but I'm betting Manning would have taken less money to play for a team with a more, ummmmm, stable dynamic even if the Jets had thrown a ton of money at Manning.

Now: The fans at MetLife Stadium are chanting nice things at the Jets as they walk triumphantly off the field, moving to 8-3 and a game ahead of the Patriots in the AFC East.

So the Patriots are 7-4 after losing to the Jets twice? Okay, this scenarios is getting more and more away from reality.

Bart Scott is high-fiving a supporter on his way through the tunnel, laughing and sharing stories. Rex Ryan is guaranteeing a Super Bowl, just like in the good old days. 

All you need to know about Filip Bondy is he thinks "the good old days" were when Rex Ryan guaranteed Super Bowls that never happened. It's all about the hype.

The crowds are spelling out J-E-T-S,


squarely behind Fireman Ed instead of forcing him out of the business.

Fireman Ed's business is spelling four letter words. It's a good gig if you can get it. I guess this is better than Jovan Belcher's "business" as described by Peter King of murdering his girlfriend and then himself.

Best of all, there is no Tim Tebow/Mark Sanchez debate. There isn't even a Tebow or Sanchez to be found on the roster.

I'm not 100% sure this is true. I stated repeatedly last fall that Peyton Manning under no circumstances would want to play with Tim Tebow since I am betting it was a distraction he didn't want. Still, I can see how the Jets would possibly keep Sanchez on the roster even if they had Manning. It's sounds silly to say and the cap numbers may be a bit high, but I would feel pretty good if the Jets signed Manning they would have restructured Sanchez's contract or kept him on the roster in some capacity.

It all might have happened, if only Manning had embarked on a New York adventure, which was really the last chance for the Jets to rescue their season and possibly this entire regime.

This is something that Filip only knows now. It was very hard to see back in March of last year that the Jets needed to sign Peyton Manning to salvage a season that had not even started yet. So it's too much second-guessing to claim now the Jets needed to sign Manning in order to salvage this season.

All the losing that followed is a predictable shortfall of offensive talent and unimaginative play-calling.

So why in the hell would Manning want to join a team that had a shortfall of offensive talent and unimaginative play-calling again? Say what you want about the Broncos receivers, but they had talent at the position last year with Thomas and Decker at wide receiver. The Jets don't have that kind of talent at two wide receiver positions.

You may remember: The Jets gave it a shot, approached Manning. They freed up an extra $7 million by restructuring DaBrickashaw Ferguson's contract.


But Peyton quickly told the Jet contacts to forget it, never led them on.

Exactly. So why the hell does it make sense to write an article saying the Jets fucked up by not signing Peyton Manning this offseason? It doesn't make sense. Manning wanted no part of the Jets, so the Jets didn't screw up in not signing Manning, because they never even had the chance to sign Manning. The Jets can be blamed for a lot of things, but they made a brief run at Manning and he didn't want to play for the Jets. There's no November Quarterbacking that can make this an untrue statement nor is this something the Jets should be thrashed for failing to do.

Maybe that was because his brother was already in town or maybe it was because he didn't like what he saw in this organization.

The bottom line is Manning rejected the overtures to have him sign with the Jets. End of story. Filip Bondy may as well write a column saying the Jets should have drafted Andrew Luck this year. It would make as much sense as stating the Jets blew it by not signing Peyton Manning.

Ryan isn't exactly a perfect fit for an aggressive quarterback and the roster lacked breakout receivers.

Don't pardon my language, but why the fuck would it be a good idea if the Jets signed Peyton Manning if this is true? What kind of mental midget writes a column saying the Jets should have signed Peyton Manning this offseason and readily admits in this very column:

a. The Jets don't have an offensively talented roster.
b. Peyton Manning rejected the Jets when they tried to sign him.
c. The roster doesn't the receivers Manning would like nor does the coach fit Manning's offensive temperament.

So why the hell write a column about how the Jets could have fixed this entire season by signing Manning? It wasn't possible. Shut up and go back to writing columns about problems with the Jets they can actually solve.

The locker room is the Big Apple Circus, minus the big-play acrobats. The Jets were rebuffed, and there was probably nothing Ryan, Tannenbaum or Woody Johnson could have done about it.

Which is why this entire column is pointless. If Manning had signed with any number of teams they would have had a great chance to salvage their season. This isn't true just for the Jets. The Chiefs, Jaguars, Panthers, Cardinals and a number of other teams could have better records with Manning as their quarterback. So writing a column about Manning rebuffing the Jets is a pointless endeavor. There's nothing to be learned. If the Jets had drafted Tom Brady in 2000 they would be in really good shape at their quarterback position. It didn't happen.

So the Jets could not have salvaged their season by signing Manning because Manning wouldn't sign with the Jets. It's not fair to indict the Jets for failing to sign Manning.

Still, they might have groveled, perhaps offered even more money. They should have done so in retrospect. They should have done anything and everything. 

Notice Manning rejected them immediately without a discussion of money at all. If the Jets had groveled to Peyton Manning then Filip Bondy would have written an article about how pathetic it is for the Jets to grovel in an effort to sign Manning, then Bondy would have made a derogatory comment about Mark Sanchez, combed his mustache and called it a day.

A little more in-person begging and an enormous signing bonus wouldn't have hurt.

It probably wouldn't have helped either. 

Instead, the Jets gave up the hunt and finalized the deal with Sanchez, a contract that is now handcuffing the team to a young player who has stopped progressing. 

When was Mark Sanchez progressing? It feels like he stopped progressing immediately after he was drafted.

The Manning fantasy is worth reviving,

No, it is not, because the Manning fantasy assumes the Jets could have done something to sign Manning, which is debatable.

With Peyton at quarterback, such mea culpas would no longer be part of the culture. It's all too tempting to extrapolate Manning's Jet season from his MVP performance with the Broncos.

With Tom Brady at quarterback, the Jets would have a couple of Super Bowls right now. If the Jets had found a way to cryogenically freeze Joe Montana in his prime they would have three Super Bowls right now. If the Jets had traded for Robert Griffin, then all things would be possible for them right now. "What if's" are pointless, especially when that "what if" situation was impossible to begin with.

Manning would ignore the disconnected agenda of Tony Sparano or any offensive coordinator, calling his own game from behind center. He would check down against all the pressure that has befuddled and sabotaged Sanchez, found the seams and the screens. Manning would give the Jets the leadership in the huddle and locker room that have been missing.

If only Manning had wanted to play for the Jets. That's the fly in Filip's ointment right now. This column is all one big useless "what if."

He would turn Jeremy Kerley into a Pro Bowl receiver and allow Shonn Greene to become a more effective running back with limited use.

Let's not get too carried away here. There's only so much Manning can do.

Plus, Filip Bondy is incorrect in that Shonn Greene would necessarily have more limited use. The Broncos are in the Top 10 in the NFL in rushing attempts, so they still run the ball a lot with Manning as the quarterback.

Remember: In 2011, with Kyle Orton and Tebow, Denver was 8-8, same record as the Jets, except the Broncos got lucky with the tiebreakers and made the playoffs. Denver that season was 25th in the league in points scored, 23rd in total offense, 31st in passing yards.

Except the difference is the Broncos had a talented defense, quality young receivers, and an excellent offensive line. The Jets don't have all of these things. So there are differences in the 2011 Jets and the 2011 Broncos that show the 2011 Broncos were probably more talented than the 2011 Jets, which is part of the reason Manning was open to playing in Denver.

In 2012 with Manning, the Broncos are third in points scored, fourth in total offense and sixth in passing yards. Meanwhile, the Jets sit 28th in the league in yards per game, 28th in passing yards, 22nd in points per game. We get the same, dysfunctional story, week after week.

(Hands Filip Bondy a tissue)

Close your eyes, you can see what might have been on Sunday: The Jets going for 9-3, and Rex apologizing to no one.

A sleepless fan base is allowed to dream.

Then close your eyes and imagine the Jets have an excellent offensive line, Andre Johnson and Brandon Marshall at wide receiver with Tony Gonzalez at tight end with Matt Forte in the backfield. Keep dreaming about that, because it is about as realistic as the odds Peyton Manning would have played in New York for the Jets. 


moedrabowsky said...

Hey, what a great concept for a coulmn!

Imagine if three Bill Russells and two Larry Legends started for the Celtics this season? I say the Heat would be in more trouble than Luke Perry after burning down the Peach Pit.

--Bill Simmons

Aleksandr said...

If Bretty Favre could be 20 years younger, the Packers would have a certain victory in the NFC championship game, despite the orgasmic-level precociousness of the 49ers quarterback, Colin Kaepernick.

If I didn't feel the need to vent about strangers' normal antics that rile up an above-first-class citizen like myself, my readers wouldn't have to suffer so much!--Peter King if he wrote every MMQB like Filip Bondy wrote his column.

Bengoodfella said...

Moe, nice. You managed to combine Bill's love of "what if" scenarios, the Celtics, pop culture references and bad analogies. Well done.

Alek, you managed to combine precociousness with Kaepernick (and why hasn't Peter called him precocious yet? You know he wants to), the love of Brett Favre, and the fact Peter loves to vent about strangers actions. I like this trend.

It also would have been helpful to the Jets if they had simply bought the NFL and then given all the high draft choices to themselves.- #Filip Bondy solutions

Snarf said...

In addition to signing manning they should have traded mark Sanchez to Arizona or Larry Fitzgerald. Who says no to this?

Bengoodfella said...

Snarf, certainly not the Cardinals. Filip Bondy would make an excellent GM.