Start googling Mike Shanahan and Peyton Manning, soon enough the rumors the coach pursuing the quarterback as a Redskins free agent emerge. After Indianapolis decided to let Manning go after the 2011 season, Shanahan made no secret of his desire to land Manning with the Redskins.
Things did not turn out that way, obviously, as Manning went to Denver and the Redskins traded a boatload of picks to acquire Robert Griffin III in the 2012 draft. Shanahan's pursuit of Manning made sense; Peyton is one of the best QBs ever to play, and he proved in Denver he had good years left. While unable to win a Super Bowl, the Broncos have won at least 12 games each season with Manning at the helm, and did win an AFC Championship in 2013.
Despite his Mile High success, rumors are again circulating that Manning could be on the move. Denver radio host Benjamin Allbright reported that the Houston Texans attempted to trade for Manning. It's worth remembering that Manning considered signing in Houston in 2012, and while the Broncos officially denied the story, other Houston media outlets have corroborated the Allbright report.
What does this mean for the Redskins? Probably nothing.
It's hard to imagine a scenario where coming to Washington makes sense for Manning, and yet, if 18 showed up, the 'Skins would have become almost instant playoff contenders. Had Washington GM Scot McCloughan shown interest in pursuing Manning, would a trade of Kirk Cousins and draft picks not been enough to start discussions? Some speculation suggests that there are parts of the Broncos organization that want to move forward with the Brock Osweiler era. Who? A 2nd round pick in 2012, Osweiler has thrown 30 career passes.
It's also worth noting that new Broncos coach Gary Kubiak worked under Shanahan in Denver before taking the head job in Houston. Kyle Shanahan served as Kubiak's offensive coordinator in Houston before coming to D.C. to work for his father, and in 2012, devising a brilliant offensive scheme around Robert Griffin III. If there is any coach that might still want to invest in RG3, maybe that could be Kubiak? His offense thrives on QB movement - waggles, bootlegs and play action passes - the type of offense that seems best suited for Griffin.
It's all speculation, and it certainly appears Manning will stay in Denver. But since it's June, and training camp is a month away, let's entertain what, if any, the Redskins should have considered for a Manning trade. Or if they should have at all. Let us know in the comments.