Is the argument for the yes that had those events not happened we would not have been able to get Peyton Manning? I suppose I would rather have Manning than Cutler. And I prefer this coaching staff to whatever unqualified and untalented personal friends Shanahan would have rolled out every year at the various coordinator positions. I personally feel once Shanny was gone, Cutler decided he was going to leave regardless. He wanted to play elsewhere and lied to get his way.
But assuming he leaves regardless, that doesn't excuse the wasted draft picks and the horrid trades for crap players. Those are things that really hurt the franchise.
I am grateful for the Tebow season, I guess. The Steelers wild card win is one of the most exciting playoff games I can remember watching. But at the end of the day it was all a mirage.
I still think McDaniels did poorly in a lot of ways and hurt this franchise. Am I grateful that Elway and Fox were able to work with what was here and keep building on that? Yes. Do I appreciate that some of the problem McDaniels caused directly led to Manning being able to come here? Yes. But that doesn't mean we couldn't have had similar circumstances and not had to go through the McDaniels hell. So I'll say no.