Rod Lakin: Well, I think you’ve buried the lead.The only compelling part of that argument is the closingsentence – an option, by the way, already closed off byManning. From a business perspective, it would be nicefor the Colts to be given the opportunity for a Montana oreven Favre-type return package (if I can borrow from youranalogies). I’d even concede that it was very foolish ofMr. Irsay to rule out this scenario from the beginning.But if you can assimilate a point as easy as that, youshould also be able to concede the following: PeytonManning is on the record as saying that he believes AndrewLuck should start from Year 1. It was the opportunityafforded to him, and it was an opportunity, howeverdelayed, handed to his brother. Unlike in the case ofFavre in 08′ and especially Montana in 1993, Manningwouldn’t be walking back into Super Bowl conditions.Prior to Favre’s first pre-retirement panic, the Green BayPackers were a kick away from the NFC Championship. Infact, Montana was given the very chance that you’veproposed for Peyton – throwing passes in the season finalefor a 14-2 49ers team. If you flip the records, there’sthe nearly parallel scenario this season between the 2-13Colts and the Houston Texans. Only Manning (per DonBanks’ excruciating portrayal in SI) couldn’t make it onthe field for that one, and the “showcase” argument wasrightly taken off the table. So you end up exactly whereI left off: Draft a young quarterback to push through thewreckage of a broken model or keep an old one in place ina short-term effort to circumvent the damage. In otherwords, only one of us can make a progressive case. Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away Bloggerment: Arizona Sports 620 bloggers Rod Lakin andJarrett Carlen argue the Colts decision to part ways withPeyton Manning.Question: If Peyton Manning is going to be able toplay football this season, why would the IndianapolisColts release him? Rod Lakin: This is the most important yet leastdiscussed aspect of the Colts’ quarterback proposition.Those who agree with their decision must weigh the well-documented volatility of the drafting process against theproven stability of a healthy Peyton Manning. Unlike thehealth question, a prima facie case is required from theColts side of the argument and, by extension, from theirchosen successor, Andrew Luck. The early returns fromIndianapolis (in the literal sense) provided a very strongopening statement. Turns out Luck isn’t just reallysmart, he’s also very athletic. And this is as far and asbest that those in favor of moving on to Luck can answerthe question. After all, the key word in the openingsentence was “proposition.” Most successful businessstart-ups involve risk: With Manning, you could havetaken a chance that the next 3 years will be as good asthe previous 13. Or, with Luck, you can bet that the next13 will overcompensate for the excruciating potential of asuccessful post-Manning Super Bowl run during the next 3.I’ll side with the long-term. Jarrett Carlen: Again you are ignoring the basicpremise of the question, which is why would the Colts lethim go if he were healthy enough to play? A healthyPeyton Manning is an elite QB, one that can keep the Coltscompetitive while mentoring a young Andrew Luck. As forhis age, the Colts obviously did not fear his age whenthey signed him to a long-term contract just one year ago.And you ask what is the going rate for an incapacitatedfuture hall of fame QB? He won’t be incapacitated if he’shealthy enough to play, and as for the going rate? In caseyou haven’t been watching the news or listening to thefine folks on Arizona Sports 620 lately, it appears as ifthere are a dozen or so NFL teams ready to back up thetruck to acquire him. Some teams are even willing to dumptheir established QBs to get him. The bottom line isthis: the Colts had Manning. They also have the #1 pick,which they will use to draft Luck. My argument is simple:The Colts would be better off keeping both and lettingLuck sit a year and learn behind the greatest QB of alltime rather than throw him to wolves right away. Yourargument seems to be that it would be better to start Luckright away, even though he is surrounded by a lack oftalent at any offensive position; that they should give upthe rights to a QB in Manning who just one season ago theythought enough of to lock up for many years, and to forgoany chance of getting any sort of compensation forManning. I’m not sure I can agree with that. One thing Iwill give you – very impressive vocabulary, it may blindthe reader from your lack of logic. Did you get a MerriamWebster’s page-a-day calendar for Christmas? 0 Comments Share What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Top Stories Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Jarrett Carlen: If we are performing under theassumption that Peyton Manning is healthy enough to playnext season, then I think it would also be safe to assumethat Peyton will return to his previous form as an elitequarterback. After all, he is only one healthy seasonremoved from an MVP and Super Bowl appearance. To me, thisboils down to the old saying “a bird in the hand is worthtwo in the bush.” Why toss away a healthy Peyton Manningfor a QB who, best case scenario, may one day be almost asgood as him? Mr. Lakin’s argument is that he’d rathergamble on the next 13 years with Luck, rather than thenext 3 with Manning. The question I ask, is why can’t theColts have both? Or if not 3, how about 1? The twoexamples most comparable in NFL history involve the 49erswith Joe Montana and Steve Young, and the Packers withBrett Favre and Aaron Rodgers. In both cases, thelegendary QB was eventually pushed out in favor of theyoung up-and-comer. EVENTUALLY. Young and Rodgers gainedvaluable knowledge and experience learning behind theveteran. A year or two sitting behind arguably thegreatest QB ever to play would only have helped Luck andthe Colts. Luck, because the pressure is not immediatelyon him to perform, and the Colts because Manning’s tradestock can only go up following a healthy, productiveseason. Rod Lakin: Well, that was a thoroughly confusingresponse. It is true that quarterback prospects have bothsucceeded as first year starters and as more long-termprojects. It is not true that there’s a consistentcorrelation between bad offensive line play and the long-term success or failure of said prospects. For example, Icouldn’t say that David Carr taking 76 sacks in 16 gamesduring his rookie season of 2002 was much of a moralebooster. I also wouldn’t be able to claim that JoeyHarrington’s taking just 8 sacks during 14 games of thatvery same rookie season laid the groundwork for any moreproductivity from the position. In point of fact, bothwere nearly identical in their futility as starters thatseason, and neither has reversed the trend in the 9 yearssince. And your argument unravels even more from there:Let’s say that the Colts are as “awful,” as you describe.Or, more specifically, let’s say their offensive line isjust as bad as Carr’s 2002 Texans. If that were the case,I would be inclined to agree that Andrew Luck should notbe thrown into an NFL rookie season, piñata style. Wherewe part ways, however, is at the absurd notion that a 36year-old quarterback coming off four neck procedures,should be. It’s an idea that’s irrationality could onlybe rivaled three paragraphs earlier with the suggestionthat “Manning’s trade stock can only go up following ahealthy, productive season.” What exactly is the goingrate for incapacitated future Hall of Fame quarterbacksthese days? Moreover, it’s contradictory to suggest thatManning could “raise his trade stock,” while “Luck is notforced into starting right away for a bad team.” You’llhave to choose which one of those you believe would have(or will have) been the case. In the interim, a moresensible conclusion prevails: Retaining the franchisequarterback, all while drafting the new one would not onlybe a competing vision, it would clearly be anirreconcilable one. Give credit to Jim Irsay forrecognizing as much and for not hedging this bet. D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ Jarrett Carlen’s counter: Whether or not Luck isgood enough to start right away is not the point (Luck,btw, a player who went from the greatest prospect sinceJohn Elway to a player that some now think is not even thebest QB available in the draft). It’s whether he shouldstart right away. For every Peyton Manning, Troy Aikman orCam Newton, there are several Joey Harringtons, RyanLeafs, David Carrs and Tim Couchs – can’t miss QBprospects who start right away behind a terrible line fora terrible team, get their confidence and body shaken andnever become what they could have been had they sat like aRodgers, McNair or Young. This Colts team is awful; youadmit as much and it’s proven by the fact they have the #1pick. The harm from taking tons of sacks and losing gameafter game would far outweigh any benefit gained from theexperience of starting from day 1. You say the Colts’options are to “draft a young quarterback to push throughthe wreckage of a broken model or keep an old one in placein a short-term effort to circumvent the damage.” This isnot the case because it doesn’t have to be one or theother. No one is arguing that they shouldn’t draft Luck.Keeping Peyton is better for the short term – The Coltsreturn to competitiveness, Peyton raises his trade stockand Luck is not forced into starting right away for a badteam – and better for the long-term. Luck gets to sit,watch and learn, the Colts get another year to add piecesaround him so that he is not thrown out naked when he doesstart, and the Colts can flip Peyton during or after theseason for players and picks. Delaying the Andrew Luck erawould not be a harmful thing. The Colts would instead beinsuring that when the Luck era does start, whether mid-season or next season, he would have the best chance tosucceed. And remember, I am arguing why they should havekept Peyton, obviously they have decided they aren’t andthat Irsay ruled out keeping or trading him is irrelevant.