AFC West Notebook: Peyton Manning is head coaching material

The next football-related phone call Peyton Manning takes should be about his interest in coaching, not playing.

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Peyton Manning’s next job will be on your team’s sideline

It’s been jokingly said in NFL circles that the league employs 33 head coaches –€” one for each team, and Peyton Manning.

It’s time to see if that theory holds weight. Manning’s body has failed him in his 18th season, but his mind is still the NFL’s sharpest. He’d make an ideal sideline hire.

Manning’s resume reads like a dream head-coaching candidate’s would. His offensive system, crafted in Indianapolis and perfected under coaching icons like Tony Dungy and longtime assistant Tom Moore, has brought teams to Super Bowls. His marathon film study sessions and manic work ethic are Belichickian. He’s been around professional football for his entire life, too.

Brock Osweiler knows what Manning could bring to a team. After all, he was cornered by a re-energized Manning to review notes and talk second-half strategy last weekend against the Patriots.

"Peyton was fantastic at halftime," Osweiler told Sal Paolantonio, via ProFootballTalk. "He came up to me and — you know Peyton –€” of course, he had a list of things ready to talk about that he saw out there. I’m not going to go into specifics, but he certainly did help me, and he helped this football team get a win today."

There will be no shortage of career options when Manning hangs his cleats up. He’s reporedly in line for a few cushy front-office jobs, if he is so inclined.

But only a handful of current NFL coaches can make meaningful halftime adjustments like that. No. 18 shouldn’t waste those skills in an office job.

So he shouldn’t rush to back Osweiler up against the San Diego Chargers (3-8) this weekend. He shouldn’t rush back to chase that ride-off-into-the-sunset Super Bowl moment at all.

It’ll come naturally — he’ll just need to swap his helmet for a headset first. 

Jack Del Rio found dream job with the Raiders

He’s a California native. He’s a former two-sport USC star. And Jack Del Rio is a recent inductee in the Trojans Hall of Fame.

But none of those reasons could convince him to leave the Raiders. According to San Jose Mercury News reporter Tim Kawakami, he turned down the Trojans’ advances when they called this week:

Don’t perceive his choice as a commentary on the state of USC football. Del Rio is amassing talent on the Raiders, and with the division’s power structure soon realigning, he could be set for the next decade.

Quarterback Derek Carr has an enviable rookie contract through 2017. Young stars like Amari Cooper and Clive Walford are only rookies this season. And, when outside linebacker Aldon Smith returns, he’ll form as talented a pass-rush duo with defensive end Khalil Mack than any other team in football.

Del Rio was wise to play the long game. He’ll sit and coach and develop talent. And if team ownership decides to move that team closer to where he went to college, all the better.

QUICK HITS: Only the undefeated Panthers (11) have won more consecutive games than Kansas City … Third-string Chiefs running back Spencer Ware (19 carries, 114 yards) managed to carve up the Bills despite losing two key blockers. Eric Fisher (neck) and Mitch Morse (concussion) are in doubt for Week 13 … The Bills’ Sammy Watkins (6 catches, 158 yards, 2 TD) torched the Chiefs’ Sean Smith a handful of times last weekend. He might be off Amari Cooper duty … Cooper (851 yards) now stands alone as the Raiders’ top receiving rookie … The Radiers’ Del Rio turned back to waiver-wire pickup David Amerson, benching cornerback DJ Hayden last weekend … Raiders QB Derek Carr earned his first-ever win vs. Kansas City last season on Nov. 20th … With five wins, the Raiders secured their winningest year since 2011 … San Diego snapped its six-week losing streak in Jacksonville … The Bolts (3-8) would now pick third in the 2016 NFL Draft … Philip Rivers will make his 156th start behind a mix-and-match offensive line … Rivers found Antonio Gates for two touchdowns a week after their sideline argument … He became the fourth-fastest quarterback to 40,000 passing yards ever … Since Osweiler took over at QB, the Broncos are averaging 174.5 rushing yards per game … Injuries to guard Louis Vasquez (groin), safety T.J. Ward (ankle), and nose tackle Sly Williams (ankle) could leave Denver shorthanded vs. San Diego.

MORE NEWS: Want stories delivered to you? Sign up for our NFL newsletters.