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A Colt becomes a Bronco

Denver introduces their new quarterback, Peyton Manning

March 20, 2012|RedEye

Peyton Manning took his talents to the Rocky Mountains.

The Denver Broncos officially introduced Manning as their new quarterback Tuesday, complete with an orange No. 18 that the team has unretired just for Peyton.

That means, of course—besides Tim Tebow going elsewhere—that the Broncos immediately become one of the AFC's Super Bowl favorites.

With Tebow at quarterback, the Broncos reached the playoffs last season and ousted the heavily favored Pittsburgh Steelers. The Manning-led Broncos will be expected to achieve much more.

This season, the Broncos will AFC West rivals Kansas City, San Diego and Oakland twice each (home and away). Also on the schedule: Cleveland, Pittsburgh, at Baltimore, at Cincinnati, at New England, at Carolina, Houston, Atlanta, New Orleans and Tampa Bay.

So how will history judge this move? By performance. Here's a cheat sheet on how to rate Denver's move next season. Bookmark and keep it handy.

BEST FREE-AGENT MOVE EVER!

14 to 16 wins, win Super Bowl

GREAT MOVE

10 to 13 wins, make playoffs, miss Super Bowl

MEH MOVE

7 to 9 wins, make playoffs

TERRIBLE MOVE

6 or fewer wins, miss playoffs

WORST FREE-AGENT MOVE EVER!

Manning is never healthy enough to play.

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