Manning’s free-agency journey enters next stage

Look out, everyone, we’re moving into the next phase of the Peyton Manning race.

I can’t imagine a scenario where he’s on another corporate jet other than to sign a contract. The meetings with teams, the wining and dining, and the six-hour conversations are over. It’s time for Peyton to make a decision.

This, of course, will involve his agent, Tom Condon, who will get down to brass tacks in talking about the numbers. Despite all the subplots, in the end, it’s going to take a contract with a lot of money to get this done.

Expect Manning to make somewhere around $20 million a year. We’ll see how much of the deal is injury-protected, how much of it is incentives, and how much of it is guaranteed. I believe he’s going to get a ton of money guaranteed up front.

It also looks like he’s not going to have to work out for any of these teams. Yes, he’ll have to pass a physical, but he hasn’t shown any inclination to work out for his suitors.

Follow Jason La Canfora on Twitter @JasonLaCanfora.

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