<
>

Peyton Manning's Super Bowl ring would come with a $2 million bonus

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- The ring is, and always will be, the thing for Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.

A favored pitchman for products that run the gamut from sports drinks to insurance to pizza and beyond, Manning has plenty of money to go around.

But when the Broncos asked Manning to take a pay cut this past offseason, they eventually met in the middle and shaved $4 million off his original base salary of $19 million for this season.

But in the back-and-forth negotiations, Manning bet on himself to earn the money back. His deal, reworked back in March when he decided to return for 2015, includes two separate $2 million bonuses: one Manning already earned when the Broncos defeated the New England Patriots 20-18 in Sunday's AFC Championship Game, and another he'll earn if the Broncos win Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7 against the Carolina Panthers.

"Everybody in the locker room wants to get a ring for Peyton, for DeMarcus [Ware], for ourselves," cornerback Chris Harris Jr. said when asked if any contractual items like Manning's bonuses or linebacker Von Miller's impending free agency would affect how the Broncos go about their business.

"We all know you have to take care of how you play, the rest of those things take care of themselves. If the team wins the championship, everybody benefits."

Manning has always deflected contract discussions by saying: "I've never really talked about my contract and I'm not going to start now."

Manning is under contract for 2016, with a salary cap charge of $21.5 million, which is bigger than his cap figure last season, when the Broncos asked Manning to take a cut. Manning has said he wouldn't make a decision about 2016 until this season is over.

Last week, Broncos executive vice president of football operations/general manager John Elway said that with the potential of a Super Bowl trip on the docket, any decisions on 2016, either by Manning or the team, could wait.

Asked just days before the AFC Championship Game if he had an idea of Manning's or the team's plans for next season, Elway said: "I don't, but we're going to face that down the road. I think Peyton said, you know, he's not going to talk about it until the end of the year. So once the year is over, hopefully that's in two or three more weeks, we'll sit down, like we did last year, and talk to Peyton about it."

All players on the winning team in the Super Bowl receive $102,000, while players on the losing team receive $51,000.