A year ago, the face of the Broncos (no, the real one) did his part to help recruit Peyton Manning to Denver.
Now that Manning has usurped Champ Bailey as the team's unquestioned leader, he's in turn looking to reprise that role as lead locker room pitchman.
During a visit with PFT Live, former Colts pass rusher and one-time AFC DPOY Dwight Freeney said he'd already heard from his former teammate:
“He sent me a text and he just said, ‘Hey man, don’t worry, come play with me in Denver,” Freeney said. “I don’t know how serious it was but, you know, it’s good to hear some of your former teammates still follow you, they care and they want to see you succeed.”
So would Freeney want to join Peyton again?“I think they’ve got a couple good pass rushers over there, I don’t know if they
have room for me,” Freeney said.
Last week, the Colts told Freeney they were not planning to retain him.
Our guess is that acquiring the 33-year old (his birthday was yesterday) would require a one-year deal for around $3M or $4M, most likely a fully guaranteed one.
It's not that Freeney wouldn't bring some value, but we can think of several positions at which we'd be spending Pat Bowlen's money (interior offensive/defensive line, safety, wide receiver) before turning to Indy's all-time leading sack man.
Of course, the realities of the offseason calendar, and of availability, dictate that you don't always fill your needs in descending order of priority.
But getting Freeney would appear adding an unnecessary luxury at an area of vast strength, while the Broncos already have some more pressing needs.
It's impossible to know whether Manning is simply being friendly with an old mate, or is operating as an extension of Elway and Company. But we'll likely find out soon enough.