Before we get letters, Peyton Manning is an incredible fantasy football quarterback. Of far less importance, he's a fairly accomplished professional football player, too. What truly matters, as anyone in a brand new jersey at the bar can tell you, is the impact even an incredible athlete will have on your fantasy season. Peyton Manning will destroy yours.
On draft day, Peyton will be the best quarterback on the board. Forget about that tragic Super Bowl; Manning was the most outstanding fantasy presence of 2013. Even the most obtuse fantasy owner is now aware of Peyton Manning. He will not come cheap.
To get Peyton Manning this year, it's going to cost you a first round pick, surely. Depending upon your league settings, he's likely commanding the fourth pick overall. Depending upon your league size, if you take a quarterback from the 4-spot, you are going to be swimming upstream the rest of the draft. You got Manning. Congratulations. Two owners later down the draft order got Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers, then backed them up with Eddie Lacy and Marshawn Lynch, respectively. You are now on the wrong side of the opening run on running backs, and as your second pick approaches top-tier wide receivers are falling like dominoes. Demaryius Thomas, A.J. Green, Dez Bryant, Brandon Marshall and, of course Calvin Johnson are gone. You now forced to define your entire 2014 season, and you've only got one player on your roster. Do you take the best WR available, then plug-and-play your third-rate running back committee all year? Or, do you grab that same RB that messed up your team last season--Alfred Morris--and get consistently outclassed by every other team's dominant wide-receiving corps? Of course you could always panic draft Rob Gronkowski and face 2014 with Ray Rice and Percey Harvin as your starters.
There is no shame in drafting Peyton Manning. There's also no future in it. What you need to do is find this year's 2013 Peyton Manning. Last year pretty much everyone who won their fantasy league did so with Peyton on their roster. With all the speculation about his neck injury, they were able to get him in the 3rd round.
So, get your running back early. Then grab Jimmy Graham or Julius Thomas, if you can. Alshon Jeffery or Antonio Brown make exceptional additions to this lineup. Then, when Tom Brady falls to you in the 4th round, snatch him as you have just seized victory. If you knew us, you would understand how hard it is to plug a New England Patriot, especially that one, as the messiah of fantasy football. It also means you can trust our judgement. You are welcome.