Peyton Manning once said he had no plans to retire after this year, but new rumors are indicating that the future Hall of Fame quarterback may have changed his mind.
Manning had previously committed to returning to the Broncos for 2015, but now sounds to be unsure about his decision. NBC’s Derek Togerson reported that Peyton’s father, former NFL quarterback Archie Manning, said Peyton was wavering with what to do.
Just talked to Archie Manning. Told us Peyton has not decided if he’ll play or retire yet and is really struggling with the decision. #NBC7
— Derek Togerson (@DerekNBCSD) January 29, 2015
Peyton Manning seemed more sure of his retirement decision before the season ending, saying his plan was to return to the team.
“I certainly plan on being back if the Broncos will have me,” Manning said via the Denver Post.
But the end of Manning’s season may have changed things. The Broncos once again fizzled in the playoffs, being upset by the Indianapolis Colts in the divisional round. Manning himself struggled in the game, and some Denver fans even booed Manning when the game ended.
Peyton Manning has talked about retirement more in recent years. This offseason he visited New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, saying he was “not far behind” the now-retired Jeter in retiring from sports.
But Manning also said he had a hard time giving up the sport he loved so much.
“When you don’t play football anymore, you can broadcast, you can coach, you can be in management, whatever, but you are not allowed to go into the huddle anymore,” Manning said. “That huddle is just for players. You can go into the locker room after the game and you can speak to the team, but I think any retired player would probably tell you they miss the huddle.”
A decision could come very shortly. After he received the Bart Starr Award on Friday, Manning said he wanted to make up his mind soon.
“I’m not interested in making this a lingering thing,” Manning said. “I’d like to make a decision soon. At the same time, both coach and Joe and John have instructed me to take some time, so I’m kind of following their orders.”
There could be other factors on whether Peyton Manning will retire or continue with the Broncos. Manning said he is meeting with new head coach Gary Kubiak, but said he is confident he can fit into Kubiak’s zone-read, play-action heavy offense.