Will Peyton Manning really be NFL's highest-paid player?

January 19, 2011
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Now that the Indianapolis Colts’ season is over, owner Jim Irsay is ready to get down to business negotiating a new contract for quarterback Peyton Manning.

Irsay and Colts President Bill Polian better hurry. The Colts and Manning have until March 3 to come to terms. That’s when the current collective bargaining agreement expires. If there’s no agreement in place by then, the owners are promising to lock players out. That likely means no contract negotiations.

If the battle between players and owners is protracted, Manning could head into next fall as a free agent. But Manning isn’t going anywhere. Both sides seem committed to keeping Manning in Indy.

So committed in fact, Irsay this week re-emphasized his pledge to make Manning the NFL’s highest-paid player. Many people have already warned Irsay that paying Manning too much leaves the team with too little money for critical support players.

That’s why I expect the gesture—and Manning’s contract—to be largely symbolic. Manning turns 35 in March and is likely good for four or five more seasons. But by giving him a seven- or eight-year contract, one that Manning has no intention of playing to its conclusion, Irsay can make good on his promise and show his appreciation while not actually hurting the team in the short-term as much as it initially appears. To give Manning the most lucrative NFL contract, it will have to be in excess of $100 million.

If Manning is as interested in winning another Super Bowl as most people think he is, I would expect his agent, Tom Condon, to agree to a back-loaded contract which would pay Manning more during the final year or two of the contract.

Those are years Manning doesn’t intend to play, which means Irsay wouldn’t have to pay.
 

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  • Pay me a ton Man ning
    Tony, would you take less to write? If you could take less and the IBJ could bring in a couple of young writers to make a it nationally prestigious paper; would you do it? My guess is no. So why should Paymeaton?
  • The answer
    is obvious, you ... yes he would. To be on a winner, who wouldn't. Besides, get real. Comparing an NFL player's salary to someone who works in the real world is nonsense.

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  1. These liberals are out of control. They want to drive our economy into the ground and double and triple our electric bills. Sierra Club, stay out of Indy!

  2. These activist liberal judges have gotten out of control. Thankfully we have a sensible supreme court that overturns their absurd rulings!

  3. Maybe they shouldn't be throwing money at the IRL or whatever they call it now. Probably should save that money for actual operations.

  4. For you central Indiana folks that don't know what a good pizza is, Aurelio's will take care of that. There are some good pizza places in central Indiana but nothing like this!!!

  5. I am troubled with this whole string of comments as I am not sure anyone pointed out that many of the "high paying" positions have been eliminated identified by asterisks as of fiscal year 2012. That indicates to me that the hospitals are making responsible yet difficult decisions and eliminating heavy paying positions. To make this more problematic, we have created a society of "entitlement" where individuals believe they should receive free services at no cost to them. I have yet to get a house repair done at no cost nor have I taken my car that is out of warranty for repair for free repair expecting the government to pay for it even though it is the second largest investment one makes in their life besides purchasing a home. Yet, we continue to hear verbal and aggressive abuse from the consumer who expects free services and have to reward them as a result of HCAHPS surveys which we have no influence over as it is 3rd party required by CMS. Peel the onion and get to the root of the problem...you will find that society has created the problem and our current political landscape and not the people who were fortunate to lead healthcare in the right direction before becoming distorted. As a side note, I had a friend sit in an ED in Canada for nearly two days prior to being evaluated and then finally...3 months later got a CT of the head. You pay for what you get...

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