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Manning’s legacy lies on Super Bowl outcome

With two Super Bowl rings, all his wins and all of his records, there is no doubting Peyton Manning's place as one of the all-time greatest. But a loss would cloud his legacy quite a bit.

With two Super Bowl rings, all his wins and all of his records, there is no doubting Peyton Manning’s place as one of the all-time greatest. But a loss would cloud his legacy quite a bit.

We could see two very different scenes on Sunday night. We could ever see Peyton Manning hoisting up the Lombardi Trophy for a second time in his career and riding off into the sunset; or we could see Peyton Manning walking off the field as a loser of his third Super Bowl. And what a difference those two outcomes would mean for Manning’s legacy.

If Manning claims his second Super Bowl championship with a second team he not only has the regular season records and wins, but also all of the hardware needed to truly be considered as the best quarterback in history. If the Broncos lose the Manning drops to 1-3 in Super Bowls with his only win being one of the most forgettable Super Bowls ever. If he performs bad in a loss it would be even worse considering what happened when he played the Seahawks.

If Manning losses he has all of the stats and records, making him one of the very best of all time, but clearly not the best of all time. There are way worse fates, but the man has already solidified himself as a Hall of Famer, but legendary status is up for grabs.

Tom Brady with four rings and six Super Bowl appearances is just better, especially considering the two played against each other in the same era. Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw each with 4-0 records in the Super Bowl are legendary. John Elway’s two late Super Bowls took him from a guy who was a great quarterback to a legendary quarterback. If Manning loses, only Jim Kelly would have fewer rings in as many appearances. Kelly is no doubt a Hall of Famer, but where does he rank on the all-time list?

Of course, it is easy to compare Manning to Dan Marino, who is in the argument as the best quarterback in history despite not having won a Super Bowl, but he had fewer opportunities to win one with only one appearance in 1984. The poor supporting cast around Marino takes the blame for him never winning far more than he does. Manning, though, would have to take blame for a third time as the guy who just could not get it done.

Manning might have one ring, but it is easy to pick apart. It is easy to point at his competition in that Super Bowl: a Bears team led by quarterback Rex Grossman, who threw two interceptions in that game. Manning had 247 yards and only one touchdown with an interception. His running back Joseph Addai led the team with 10 receptions for 66 yards; Manning was not slinging the ball down field by any means in that game.

That plays into his legacy. He won one Super Bowl, but two Super Bowls is legendary. And that is what is on the line for Manning this Sunday.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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