Before he signed with the Broncos, the Tennessee Titans were the other major suitor for Peyton Manning. The Titans were able to offer Manning the opportunity to return to the state where he played his college ball, a lifetime contract, and a substantial salary. Up until now, however, it had not been known how substantial that salary was.
According to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, the Titans’ offer to Peyton Manning was worth 25 million dollars yearly. This illustrates just how desperate “win-now” owner Bud Adams was to get Manning and also that Manning didn’t make his decision in Denver for financial reasons. Manning, who took 19.2 million per year from the Broncos, still the biggest yearly salary in the NFL, felt Denver was the place that gave him the best chance to win. The lure of playing for John Elway also probably had something to do with it as well.
This revelation could also have implications for Drew Brees and the Saints. The Saints and Brees are currently in heated negotiations 6 days before the deadline for franchise players to sign. The Saints are offering 19.25 million, while Brees wants 20.5 million. While both would make him the highest paid player in the league over Manning, Brees might be would likely to hold out for the money he wants knowing that a team out there offered Manning, 3 years older than Brees, 25 million. Manning also missed all of last year and has had 4 neck surgeries. If Brees were to hit the open market next offseason, I can’t imagine how big some of the offers might be.