Peyton Manning

Spring 1998, the Indianapolis Colts are in dire need of a franchise quarterback and have the difficulty of choosing between two star collegiate players, Peyton Manning and Ryan Leaf with the first pick in the NFL Draft. One was the completed prospect, record setting SEC player of the year. The other an up and coming big armed quarterback from the “air it out” Pac-10. Needless to say, the Colts made the right choice.

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Peyton Manning
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Player Info

Height 6' 5"
Weight 230 lbs
DOB: 3/24/1976

Peyton Manning Stats

NFL Draft

1998/Round 1/Pick 1

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Peyton Manning Career Highlights

Pro Bowl 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009

NFL Awards
Super Bowl XLI MVP

Team(s) As A Player

Indianapolis Colts 1998-Present

Manning compiled an outstanding 39-6 college mark, nearly had a clean sweep in the college football awards ceremony. The one blemish losing out on the big daddy, the Heisman Trophy to Michigan defensive back Charles Woodson. With all the accolades it still took a convincing second workout with the Colts to put him over the top of immature and unproven Ryan Leaf. Peyton had a phenomenal college career capped with 3819 yards and 36 touchdowns as a senior. He threw just 33 interceptions in 1381 career attempts at Tennessee.

Manning's Early Years 

Peyton Manning came into the league ready to play and play he did. Starting at quarterback from day one is something few are ready to do, yet Peyton was an exception to the rule. In his rookie campaign he put up numbers across the board including interceptions. He would set a record as far as rookies are concerned with 28 interceptions to go along with 3739 yards and 26 touchdowns however. Despite finishing 3-13 in his rookie year, the Colts would reap the rewards of a strong draft class choosing Edgerin James out of the University of Miami. That would complete the trifecta of Manning, Harrison and James catapulting the team to a 13-3 mark in Peyton’s second season. also his first 4000 yard season and again a steady 26 touchdowns. Although with big success comes big disappointment as the Colts would fall in their first playoff game. It would take some seasoning to get to the top.

Manning's Playoff Woes 

2003 was a season to remember as Peyton led his team to yet another playoff berth. With a 12-4 record the colts were a dominant team ready to compete on the big stage. Peyton would earn a share of the MVP honors in the league with Steve McNair of the Titans, however playoff success is hard to come by and it takes perfection for Peyton to get over the top. Denver was the opponent and Peyton was not about to disappoint. The numbers, how about 22-26 passing for 377 yards and 5 touchdowns leads to a perfect quarterback rating of 158.3, absolutely obliterating Denver 41-10.

A season of apparent success led to an epic rivalries early stage just beyond the horizon, AFC Championship 2003 set the Colts against the New England Patriots. Two elite teams to battle in the frozen northeast. Nasty weather could be used an excuse yet I doubt Peyton would stoop to that level. The Patriots were ready to play and that they did, forcing Peyton into 4 Interceptions and a 24-14 loss. The first of many showdowns with Belicheck and Brady. Perhaps next year was the year.

2004 was another opportunity to shine and to get the Colts over the top. Amassing 4557 yards passing and an NFL record 49 touchdowns, breaking Dan Marino’s previous record of 48 set 20 years earlier, led to Peyton Manning winning his second straight MVP award, this one however unanimous. A second straight 12-4 season however was not enough to get the Colts home field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs setting up yet another showdown with New England. A second straight match up led to a second straight loss, falling to the Patriots 20-3 sent Peyton on a mission to get even better.

2005 shot out of the gates at 13-0 to assure early home field advantage to the determined Colts. Peyton Manning continued his dominance despite missing out on a seventh consecutive 4000 yard season finishing with 3747 yards. The eventual resting of Peyton in the final weeks of the season put his records on the shelf and may have cost him a third straight MVP as well, falling short to Shaun Alexander whom set a short lived touchdown record broken the very next season by Ladainian Tomlinson, the eventual 2006 NFL MVP.

Manning did however have a good thing going, having already beaten his rival Patriots in week six of the regular season ending what had been an enduring 6 game stretch. If it hadn’t been for a Cinderella team from the steel city, this was beyond a doubt the best Colts team in the Peyton era. What a crazy way to end your season however than to play in one of the most controversial and downright exciting games in recent memory. Trailing late 21-10, a disputable call aided by instant replay overturned a Troy Polamalu interception of Manning, this giving the Colts the break of a lifetime. The colts would score moments later on a touchdown pass by Peyton. With an eventual two point conversion the score stood 21-18.

The Pittsburgh Steelers would all but put the game in the books as they pounded the clock and the Colts into submission. It came to a goal line play by Colts player Gary Brackens head butting the ball from Cinderella himself, Jerome Bettis. As the ball tumbled in seemingly slow motion Nick Harper scooped up the ball and ran, and run he did picking up blocks and making football moves down the field. Had it not been for Cinderella magic, Ben Roethlisberger wouldn’t have made one of the luckiest “tackles” in recorded history, tripping Harper up short of midfield. Peyton had another shot to win this game. He gave his just do, getting Colts kicker Mike Vanderjact a shot to tie the game with just seconds remaining. The kick came from about 45 yards, makeable indeed. However the always consistent Vanderjact wasn’t close and the Colts went down in a heartbreaker. Perhaps next year for the Colts and Manning.

Peyton Manning Wins Super Bowl

2006 started with a bang, the acquisition of Patriots clutch kicker Adam Vinatieri. The very foot responsible for game winning kicks under pressure and on the biggest stage of all, the Super Bowl. The loss of Edgerrin James was the only question mark as rookie Joseph Addai and reliable backup Dominic James would have to plug the hole. Peyton was back on track with a superb season, 4397 yards and 31 touchdowns. Going into the playoffs the Colts sat at 12-4. Peyton would lead the Colts through the first two weeks of the playoffs to set up a match up with those darn Patriots.

The Colts however defeated those Patriots for the second consecutive time during the regular season, earning the ever important home field advantage for the AFC Championship. Manning would have to pull a comeback victory however to earn a shot at the Lombardi Trophy. Trailing early 21-3, Peyton would be forced to win this game with his very arm. “That's not the hole you want to be in,” Manning said, adding:

“At that point, I really felt like I wanted to make at least seven points up somewhere. ... It was kind of my fault it was 21-3.” (2) “You just hate getting down to these guys," Manning said. "Because hardly anyone ever comes back." Nobody ever had - as in 0-15 – until now. (3)

The game came down to an 80 yard Manning led drive in the waning minutes to put the Colts up 38-34. Tom Brady, the golden boy himself had 1:00 to play with, yet came up short perhaps throwing a wrench into the Patriots dominance when it counts. Peyton had done the unthinkable guiding the Colts to the Super Bowl. “You guys were already four stories deep about how Peyton Manning couldn't do it again,” said Dallas Clark. “I guess you had to scratch those out.” (2) After the game, Peyton Manning said with a grin, “We wanted to keep it a little more interesting for the fans and be sure this was an instant classic.” (2)

This would become Peyton’s day. Nasty weather in south Florida set the stage. The vaunting defense of the NFC Champion Chicago Bears was the opponent. As it seemed true to fit the legacy of Peyton Manning, Super Bowl XLI was one ugly game. Starting with an opening kickoff return for touchdown by star Bears rookie Devin Hester put pressure immediately in Manning’s face. However nobody was going to spoil Peyton’s party. Peyton took his Colts on his back and led them to victory. The defense that wasn’t highly touted was whom showed up on this day, shutting down the Bears lackluster attack. Peyton would go on to win MVP honors rightly do. He is the backbone and the leader of a Colts team that had finally reached the pinnacle. “We have won as a team all year long; tonight everybody did their part,” Manning said, Vince Lombardi trophy cradled in his arms. “There was no panic. Everybody did their part.” (1)

Peyton Manning Gives Back 

Just do was the recent success to a player whom puts it all on the line every week, still having not missed a start in his career. Peyton Manning is widely considered the best quarterback in the NFL these days. Also a humanitarian as his efforts during Hurricane Katrina were not overlooked, as his beloved home was all but destroyed. Peyton, along with brother Eli Manning were at the front of the line giving all their efforts to those in need. Showing the world yet again that football is just a game and Peyton Manning is simply a man playing his beloved game.

By T. Lewis,
July 19, 2007

Peyton Manning Biography Sources:

(1)  Colts top the Bears to win Super Bowl. (2007, February 4) Miami Herald
In the end, Indianapolis victory was about one guy ... Peyton Manning (2007, January 22) Charleston Daily Mail
(3)  With Manning, Colts always had a prayer (2007, January 22) The Boston Globe

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Peyton Manning Common Questions & Answers

Is Peyton Manning married? Yes, Peyton and Ashley Manning are married. They were married in 2001.

Is Peyton Manning divorced? No. Peyton Manning is still married to his wife Ashley.

How Many Super Bowls has Peyton Manning Won? As of now, Peyton Manning has won the one Super Bowl.

Where does Peyton Manning Live? Peyton Manning lives in Indianapolis, Indiana.

What is Peyton Manning’s middle name? Peyton Manning’s middle name is Williams.

Does Peyton Manning have any children? No, Peyton and Ashley Manning currently do not have any kids.

Is Peyton Manning a Christian? Yes, Peyton Manning is a Christian from what I can read.

Is Peyton Manning a Republican? It appears that Peyton Manning is a Republican. He has donated to several Republican candidates.

How tall is Peyton Manning? Peyton Manning is 6-5.

Is Peyton Manning in the Hall of Fame? Not yet. A player has to wait at least five years after they retire before being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Is Peyton Manning the Greatest of all time? Peyton Manning is one of the greatest players in NFL history.

Is Peyton Manning the best quarterback ever? Statistically in the regular season, he is the best quarterback ever.

Is Peyton Manning related to Eli Manning? Yes, Eli Manning is his younger brother.

Is Peyton Manning overrated? Some will argue he is overrated due to his average post season numbers. However, he has won a Super Bowl.

Is Peyton Manning left handed? No, Peyton Manning is right handed.

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