Let's say Eli Manning's last name was, say, Jones.
If Eli Jones became available to play for the suddenly awful Broncos, I don't believe many fans would be interested.
But, in reality, there's the magic of that last name. There's the memory of how Peyton Manning rescued a lagging franchise, pushed an offense to record-breaking and highly entertaining scoring explosions and carried the Broncos to two Super Bowls.
Eli has crafted a noble career. He led the Giants to two Super Bowl wins in about the same way Peyton led the Broncos to one Super Bowl win. The defense did most of the carrying. Eli has been a durable leader who consistently ranked among the NFL's top 10 quarterbacks, if never one of the top three or four. He seldom approached his brother's level of historic greatness.
He's 36, and he's been dumped as the Giants starter. Remember, the Giants have tumbled into an even deeper NFL well than the Broncos.
Eli, despite that magic last name, is not the man to rescue the Broncos. He will probably end up in Jacksonville, where the franchise is run by Tom Coughlin, Eli's former coach with the Giants. The Jaguars can offer an elite defense, one strong enough to carry a decent offense to the Super Bowl.
The Broncos need to find a young, healthy quarterback in his prime or nearing his prime. The Broncos should resist the temptation of finding another Peyton. Tony Romo would not have been the answer to the Broncos many problems. Eli is not the answer, either.
Eli is well past his best days.
The Broncos should look elsewhere.