Report: Peyton Manning Wants Bill Belichick as TV Teammate

The former quarterback also wants Belichick buddy Nick Saban to join Omaha Productions

Peyton Manning and Bill Belichick speak after the 2016 AFC Championship game in Denver. Could they team up on TV?
Longtime rivals Peyton Manning and Bill Belichick could be getting together for TV.
Doug Pensinger/Getty

Like politics and adversity, NFL unemployment can make for strange bedfellows. As first reported by The Athletic, the bedfellows in this instance could be retired NFL quarterback Peyton Manning and his longtime tormentor Bill Belichick, who is currently without a coaching job after being fired by the Patriots in January following a disastrous 2023 season that saw New England finish with a putrid 4-13 record.

A coach without a team, Belichick is in need of a new gig and The Athletic reports that the soon-to-be 72-year-old’s next job could be with Manning’s entertainment company Omaha Productions, the outlet behind the so-called ManningCast during Monday Night Football on ESPN.

“If Manning were to sign Belichick, the idea of teaming with ESPN to create a Belichick and Nick Saban ManningCast is expected to be broached, according to officials briefed on the plans,” per The Athletic. “Saban, considered by many the greatest college football coach of all time, joined ESPN’s College GameDay after retiring from Alabama. (ESPN/Omaha could call it the GOATCast.)”

Nothing is imminent as Belichick, who has already met with CBS and NBC executives and made it clear he isn’t interested in being part of a weekly Sunday studio show, has yet to discuss anything with ESPN, but he may have had some informal talks with Manning.

Teaming up with Belichick on a TV show, even if Manning doesn’t appear on it, would be an interesting choice for the Hall of Fame quarterback, who went 8-12 (regular season and postseason combined) in his career against the Patriots. While the relationship between Belichick and Manning always seemed to be one of respect, it never had the warmth that the retired QB appeared to have for his counterpart Tom Brady.

“For 18 years, we battled fiercely but regardless of each game’s outcome, I always walked off the field with the utmost appreciation for the highest level of competition in which those games were prepared for and played,” Bill Belichick said in 2016 when Manning announced his retirement. “Peyton’s immense contributions to the game reflect how genuinely passionate he is about it. I can honestly say that I never ‘enjoyed’ our meetings, but the respect I have for Peyton Manning as a competitor was, and will likely remain, second to none.”

Would Belichick have the same sort of respect for Manning as an employer? Especially with Brady heading to Fox, which also employs former Patriots Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman, it would be interesting to find out.

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