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"For some reason he took a liking to me. We talked about a great deal of stuff and had a few beers together. He taught me a couple of cool things about reading defenses.
"I was really sad when he got hurt and left the team. He was 40 years old and had been through so many wars. He didn’t have the legs anymore, but he could still throw it."
Sounds a little like Dan Marino, who was nudged into retirement by the Dolphins at the end of the 1999 season. Minnesota coach Dennis Green wanted Dan to play on with the Vikings. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers showed some interest, too. There even was a brief flirtation with the Steelers of his Pittsburgh hometown before Marino decided, at 38, to give it up.
"Bill Cowher called me about playing," Marino said five years later, "but I had to make a decision within a couple of days because he already had a guy that he was going to sign.
"At the time, I just kept thinking back to how my body felt the year before. And, to me, there was something special about playing 17 years in one place. Although I was pretty close to (joining Pittsburgh), it just didn’t feel right. I probably could have played another year, no doubt."
From the sound of things, Manning believes he is good for three or four more years.
The Dolphins, meanwhile, have other options in search of an upgrade over Matt Moore. They could chase potential free agent Matt Flynn, a Green Bay backup who has worked with Philbin, or trade away the farm to move up in the draft for Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin or, far less likely, Luck.
If Ross listens most to Peterson, however, all the Colts have to do is move on from Peyton, the way San Francisco did with Montana, and the Dolphins can be expected to take a serious swing at him.
Dave George writes for The Palm Beach Post.
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