ESPN aired their special "The Book of Manning" Tuesday night just a day after the Raiders faced Peyton Manning and the Broncos on Monday Night Football. Having just seen him light up the Raiders, it was especially interesting to see him as a 3-year-old child running around the back yard of his family's house sporting an Oakland Raiders helmet.
The year when it happened was 1979 which was two years removed from the Raiders first Super Bowl and right in the middle of their heyday. His brother in the video and his brother's friend were wearing a Chargers helmet and a Saints helmet respectively. Taking the video is the Manning father, Archie, who was actually playing for the New Orleans Saints at the time.
Some 19 years later, Peyton Manning entered the 1998 NFL draft. That year it was between Manning and Ryan Leaf for the top pick. The Raiders had the fourth overall pick in that draft with no shot to land Manning. Even If the Colts had picked Ryan Leaf, the Chargers would have taken Manning with the second overall pick. The Colts made the right choice and Leaf went to the Chargers.
Manning was the best quarterback in the country that year which makes it all the more odd that Leaf was even in the conversation. But neither won the Heisman. That honor went to Charles Woodson and that's who the Raiders chose with their number four overall pick. Both Manning and Woodson have since won Super Bowls. Neither of which were while wearing a Raiders' helmet.