Last night, a very red Jim Irsay all but admitted to ESPN’s Hannah Storm that the Colts will take a quarterback with the top pick of April’s draft. It was just another clue that Indianapolis is going to end up with Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck on its roster come spring.
And while that doesn’t necessarily mean that Peyton Manning is done in Indy, it’ll be incredibly hard to keep both quarterbacks in town from a logical standpoint. Luck is considered ready to start from the get-go, while Manning probably wouldn’t accept a backup role assuming he’s healthy.
But it also doesn’t make much sense from a financial standpoint. ESPN football business analyst and former NFL executive Andrew Brandt crunched the numbers:
Now, two years ago, before the new collective bargaining agreement curtailed hemorrhaging rookie salaries and bonuses, keeping Manning on the roster with a top pick probably would have cost the Colts closer to $70 million.
But two years ago, there was no salary cap. And before that, it was pushing $130 million. In 2012, the cap is expected to be closer to $120 million. That would mean that the Colts, who have plenty of voids to fill on both offense and defense, would be committing well over 40 percent of their funds for 2012 to two guys that play the same position and can never be on the field together.
Is it worth it? I think not.