He had only been a Super Bowl champ for a matter of minutes before he was asked if he was going to retire and he came back with one of the best remarks thus far saying “I’ll take some time to reflect. I’ve got a couple of priorities first. I want to go kiss my wife and my kids. I want to go hug my family. I’m going to drink a lot of Budweiser tonight, Tracy. I promise you that” (Davis, 2016). However, it was no secret that Peyton Manning was planning on retiring, it was just a matter of when.
It wasn’t until late Saturday night that Manning had begun to notify those in his closest inner circle in regards to his retirement and making it of public knowledge by Sunday. By Monday there were press conferences all lined up ready for Manning to formally announce his retirement after 18 years of playing in the NFL.
Manning from the beginning has been one of the most decorated quarterbacks from high school, to college, and into his NFL career. Starting out with the many, many respected awards was the Gatorade high school player of the year in 1993 and soon after adding prestigious awards such as multiple First-team All-SEC awards, NCAA QB of the year and SEC player of the year during his college career.
Manning was then drafted #1 overall in the 1998 NFL draft to the Indianapolis Colts playing and starting 13 full seasons including his rookie season. During Manning’s time with the Colts, Manning won his first Super Bowl in 2006. However, it wasn’t until after Manning’s first Super Bowl win that he began to win notable awards in the NFL. In 2012, Manning won the NFL comeback player of the year award after he had to sit out the 2011 season due to a neck injury he received in 2010. Manning also holds many notable records in the NFL that include; most career passing yards (71,940), most touchdown passes in a single season (55-2013), most career touchdown passes (539), along with so many other notable records and awards.
In 2010, Peyton Manning received a hit that would end up putting him out for the 2011 season due to a neck injury. At the end of the 2011 season Manning was traded to the Denver Broncos where he would end up starting and playing in every game of his first season with the Broncos. While with the Broncos Manning would lead the team to 2 Super Bowl appearances along with his final Super Bowl win in 2015. In Manning’s final season he only played in 10 of the 16 games while only starting in 9. This was the only season in all of Manning’s career that he would not play in or start every game of the season. Manning ended his final season with 2,249 passing yards, averaged -1.0 rushing yards, and of course 1 Super Bowl win.
Once Manning had won his 2nd and final Super Bowl, the sexual assault allegations against Manning from 1996 began to arise once again. Manning who was in the athletic training room one day in 1996 said he was showing his butt to another player when the athletic trainer bent over and received Peyton Manning’s genitals to her face. After all the allegations had settled the athletic trainer received a $300,000 settlement. Although all the news reports and resurfacing of this issue was brought about it seemed as though it was quickly swept back under the rug allowing Manning to enjoy his last few weeks as an NFL player.
Manning will be leaving this sport with an unforgettable career that will forever go down in history as possibly one of the best quarterback to ever play the game. We all knew his time was coming and that he was nearing the end of his career. Although it is sad to see Manning go and his press conference wasn’t easy to watch, it was a pleasure for all to watch Manning play the game he loved and succeed in some of the best ways.
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