Forget Tony Romo, We Want Peyton Manning in the Broadcasting Booth

DALLAS - NOVEMBER 27: Quarterback Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys attends a game between the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Dallas Mavericks at the American Airlines Center on November 27, 2006 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Tony Romo is set for a second career in broadcasting. | Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

When big-name players, especially quarterbacks, retire from the National Football League, the next logical step almost always seems be a move upstairs to the broadcast booth. Whether or not it’s at the college professional level, broadcasting and media work allows former players to stay connected to the game even when their bodies are no longer capable of wowing fans on Sunday afternoons.

Some of the best players in NFL history have gone on to have legendary broadcasting careers. The biggest name to join the television ranks this year is former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo.

Romo signed a deal with CBS shortly after announcing his retirement from the NFL to be the network’s lead NFL game analyst for the 2017 season. He is taking over for Phil Simms, and will be working alongside Jim Nantz and Tracy Wolfson.

This goes without saying, but CBS is taking a major risk in putting Romo on their top broadcast team in his first year out of the league.

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 27: Quarterback Jay Cutler #6 of the Chicago Bears looks on from the sidelines during the second quarter of the game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 27, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
Jay Cutler was going to be a broadcaster before he signed with the Miami Dolphins. | Steve Dykes/Getty Images

Romo isn’t the only former player who was set to transition into a career in broadcasting this fall.

Former Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler had inked a deal to be Fox’s No. 2 game analyst (behind Hall of Fame quarterback Troy Aikman) prior to signing with the Miami Dolphins as an injury replacement for Ryan Tannehill. Future Hall of Fame outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware is set to join the Cowboys’ broadcast team for preseason games. Future Hall of Fame cornerback/safety Charles Woodson joined the ESPN Monday Night Countdown team last fall, and countless former players have studio jobs with the likes of CBS, Fox, NBC, and the NFL Network.

There is one notable player that would be arguably the best broadcaster in the business missing from the list, though.

ENGLEWOOD, CO - MARCH 07: Quarterback Peyton Manning reacts as he announces his retirement from the NFL at the UCHealth Training Center on March 7, 2016 in Englewood, Colorado. Manning, who played for both the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos in a career which spanned 18 years, is the NFL's all-time leader in passing touchdowns (539), passing yards (71,940) and tied for regular season QB wins (186). Manning played his final game last month as the winning quarterback in Super Bowl 50 in which the Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers, earning Manning his second Super Bowl title. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Networks should be doing whatever it takes to get Peyton Manning in the booth. | Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Legendary quarterback Peyton Manning has all of the necessary qualities to be the best broadcaster or game analyst in the business. The future first-ballot Hall of Famer is still to this day one of the most recognizable public figures in the world, and he has proven (on multiple occasions) that he can excel in a live television environment.

Manning hosted Saturday Night Live back on March 24, 2007. He instantly earned the title of best athlete-host in SNL history. His show produced several classic skits, but in our eyes, none were better than this gem.

Just over a month ago (July 12, 2017 to be exact), Manning hosted the 2017 ESPY Awards. And just like his appearance on SNL, the five-time NFL MVP turned in an epic performance.

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 03: Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos runs the offense against the San Diego Chargers at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 3, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Few people understand the game of football the way Peyton Manning does. | Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

As a player, Manning revolutionized the quarterback position in the NFL. The term ‘coach on the field’ gets thrown around a lot in reference to the position. If there were ever a player deserving of that title it was “The Sheriff.”

Manning was truly was the equivalent of having an offensive coordinator directing traffic on the field during the prime of his career. He prided himself on his preparation for games, which, to this day, is unlike anything the NFL has ever seen (his critics often said that Manning was over-prepared on multiple occasions).

Can you imagine the insight Manning could bring to the booth if he brought a similar approach to a potential broadcasting career?

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 12: Host Peyton Manning speaks onstage at The 2017 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Peyton Manning killed it at the ESPY’s. | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

We already alluded to this, but Manning’s personality would be a major draw for literally any broadcasting network.

He is capable of carrying on a serious, intellectual conversation; he can break down the X’s and O’s of football as good as anyone; and he has proven that he can use his dry sense of humor in a timely and effective manner.

Bottom line: People just seem to be drawn to Manning.

SANTA CLARA, CA - FEBRUARY 07: Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos looks at the Vince Lombardi Trophy after Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Peyton Manning is a football historian. | Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Manning has a love for the game of football that is unmatched by the overwhelming majority of NFL players (both past and present). Not only was he a fierce competitor, the 10-time All-Pro was (and still is) an avid football historian.

It’s usually the bookworm media types that know and remember the most miniscule details of the sport’s history. Manning’s knowledge base would compare favorably to anybody’s.

Needless to say, Manning is the type of person that you would want on your team in a game of NFL trivia.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - NOVEMBER 20: Former Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning watches action prior to a game between the Indianapolis Colts and the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 20, 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Peyton Manning belongs in a broadcasting booth. | Stacy Revere/Getty Images

At this point in time, it appears as though we are all going to have to wait at least one more year before we see Manning seriously entertain the idea of taking his talents upstairs to a broadcast booth. Until that day comes (hopefully it happens sooner rather than later), we will be here clamoring over the potential of what a Manning broadcasting career could be — especially when we watch one of Romo’s broadcasting performances this fall.