March 20 2012; Englewood, CO, USA; Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen (left) and quarterback Peyton Manning (center) and executive vice president for football operations John Elway pose for a photo during a press conference at Broncos headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE
With Peyton Manning, the Denver Broncos will be preparing for primetime. Mike Klis of the Denver Post reports that the Broncos have received word that there is a "strong chance" they'll open the season on NBC's Sunday Night Football in Week 1.
Klis floats the Pittsburgh Steelers as a possible opponent for the Broncos which would of course be a rematch of last year's thrilling AFC Wild Card game.
But I have an idea: Send the Kansas City Chiefs to Mile High on Sunday night for Week 1.
The Chiefs-Broncos rivalry is a good one, even if it doesn't get the attention of a Chiefs-Raiders rivalry, or other rivalries around the league. What better way to kick start the rivalry than by placing the Chiefs on Sunday Night Football against the Broncos?
The story lines are all there for ESPN and NFL Network to pump up. Manning, of course, is the only story line you need but there's more. The Chiefs will be returning a number of young stars (which the NFL loves) including Jamaal Charles and Eric Berry. GM Scott Pioli and head coach Romeo Crennel have history with Manning via the old Patriots-Colts rivalry. Some of John Elway's most memorable games came against the Chiefs and this would be an opportunity for the league to revisit yesteryear as Manning replaces Elway as an iconic quarterback in Denver.
With Manning, the NFL would be best served to play up the Chiefs-Broncos rivalry, which should start in Week 1 on Sunday night.