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Mile High Morning: ESPN selects Peyton Manning as the best free-agent signing of the 2010s

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The Lead

Is there really any question as to which free-agency signing was the best of the last decade?

I don't think so, and neither does ESPN, nor its readers.

In an article looking back on the bests and worsts of the 2010s, Manning was the clear winner of the top free-agent signing honor.

"News helicopters tracked Manning's arrival for his visit to Denver," Jeff Legwold wrote. "When he signed a five-year, $96 million contract in March of 2012, Broncos president of football operations/general manager John Elway hailed it as a franchise-changing move that "raises all boats." In Manning's four seasons, the Broncos won 50 games, four division titles, went to two Super Bowls, won Super Bowl 50 and set the NFL's single-season scoring record (606) as the only 600-point team in league history. That season Manning also set the NFL record with 55 touchdown passes. He had three of his top four career touchdown seasons with the Broncos -- 55 in 2013, 39 in 2014 and 37 in 2012."

The readers agreed, with 70 percent of more than 16,000 votes going to Manning over the likes of CB Stephon Gilmore (Patriots), C Alex Mack (Falcons), S Tyrann Mathieu (Chiefs) and QB Nick Foles (Eagles).

Below the Fold

Though Peter King is on vacation, he asked the very capable Michael MacCambridge to fill in for him on this week's "Football Morning in America." MacCambridge, the author of "America's Game: The Epic Story of How Pro Football Captured A Nation," spent much of his column discussing the possibility of an additional 17th regular-season game, but he also includes an anecdote from Peyton Manning that might give you a chuckle.

We may still be a few months away from the football season, but a new article in the Wall Street Journal has taken a closer look at the dangers that exist with the COVID-19 pandemic. "While the pandemic shut down other sports across the country in March, football has had the benefit of waiting and planning," authors Andrew Beaton and Rachel Bachman write. "Teams from the high school level through the NFL were still months away from even their preseasons. The sport's leaders could wait while they watched the infection curve, and develop protocols to play without missing months of their seasons."

The Unclassifieds

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