NFL Free Agency: Peyton Manning Comments Put Kansas City Chiefs In Awkward Situation

We'll just go ahead and overlook the "tampering" situation that may arise from the comments Kansas City Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel made at his press conference at the combine in regards to Peyton Manning. It's been widely reported everywhere that Crennel said he'd basically be interested in pursuing "a talent like that" in regards to Mannings' impending free agency. It's not just any tampering charges that have put the Chiefs in an awkward situation. Since when have the Chiefs come out and said anything like this since Scott Pioli and company came to town?

Over the past week or so, the Chiefs seem to have backed off the "Matt Cassel is our guy" pitch they had been using since making that trade with the New England Patriots three years ago. This has been a good thing for the faction of Chiefs fans worried that Scott Pioli was married to Cassel as his starting quarterback because it was his first big move as general manager, and that he'd give Cassel every chance to show he made the right decision. But over the past week they've come out and basically said they'd take a look at Manning. They've also said they'd like to bring back Kyle Orton and that Orton would be interested in returning, and even went as far as talking about how impressed they were with RG3 at the combine.

We know that with only two quarterbacks under contract for next season, Matt Cassel and Ricky Stanzi, that they are absolutely going to bring in another guy to compete with Cassel for the starting quarterback job. They have said as much. But why would they add fuel to the fire with comments about Manning if they weren't seriously considering bringing him to Kansas City? If it was any other NFL team, it might not be quite as intriguing. But it's because we've gotten next to nothing for three years from the front office about what they want to do or what they might try to do that gives these comments a little more juice. It's also interesting that these "rumors" on a team Peyton might be linked to are the first I've heard that show Peyton's camp being interested in another team, as opposed to the team just being interested in him. Although just because they aren't reported doesn't mean it's not happening, but it's still worth noting.

I'm not saying that this definitely means that Manning is on his way to Kansas City and has already locked up a place in Loch Loyd while friends of his frequent pizza joints. What I'm saying is that if they don't plan on pursuing Manning, they did a bad thing in continuing to let fans think that they were. People around Kansas City have gotten used to not knowing much about what goes on behind closed doors at 1 Arrowhead Drive. That's perfectly all right and, honestly, it's the best way of going about their business in my opinion. So when this news comes out and the next day a member of the Chiefs speaks publicly about it and they say more than they probably should and borderline on illegal with those comments, how do fans not think this is a serious possibility?

This build up and buzz will only backfire if they end up signing Chad Henne, Jason Campbell, or if they end up bringing back Kyle Orton. Don't get me wrong, I like Orton as our quarterback and if he was plan A all along then they never should have said anything about Manning. But if you tell me we're going to Cabo San Lucas on a vacation and then at the last minute you tell me we're going to the Ozarks instead, even though the Ozarks are pretty cool, why get my hopes up about Cabo when you know the Ozarks would then be a letdown? Tell me we're going to the Ozarks in the first place!

The front office wants to look at this game as a business and the fans look at it with an emotional eye. It's the recipe for an extreme success or an extreme letdown at this point because of how they've played this situation. Good luck getting that business its money when the people supporting it have been teased and let down. Right or wrong, it's going to spike one way or another within the next three weeks.

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