The Denver Broncos were rumored to be seriously contemplating Peyton Manning’s retirement last offseason, after injuries hampered the 38-year-old quarterback’s play in the tail end of the season. However, new reports indicate that he may still have a lot left in the tank.
The Broncos gave Manning several weeks to ponder his future after the 2014 season ended, and Manning ultimately decided to come back for another season. But many believed that the 2015 season would be Manning’s final one.
It may not be so clear anymore. Peyton Manning has returned to training camp showing no lingering effects of the injuries that impacted his play late last season. Peyton also got a big boost from wide receiver Demaryius Thomas, who seemed to imply that Manning is nowhere near retirement.
“He’s smiling. I feel like he’s good. I don’t know with the arm strength because I know I haven’t caught a lot. I don’t know if you all are going to believe what I say, but I think it’s a little more zip on it,” Thomas said after practice Thursday. “I don’t know how he can do that. He’s an older guy—one of the oldest guys on the team—but I feel like every year around this time, there’s almost more zip on his ball. You can notice it. He threw a couple posts today, probably 50, 60 yards, and I’m like, ‘Whoa.’ It’s making me excited.”
There are still conflicting ideas on Peyton Manning’s retirement. His contract runs through 2016, but Peyton’s father, Archie Manning, said that he’ll likely re-evaluate after the coming season.
“He’s a realist,” Archie Manning told 7News in Denver. “I know this: He would like to get everything he can get out of this year, and see what happens.”
Archie added that Peyton has been lucky so far, suffering only one major injury during his career. His future in the NFL could depend on staying out of the infirmary and on the field, Archie added.
“Peyton has been very fortunate,” Archie Manning added. “He missed a year (2011) with four neck surgeries. Other than that, he’s been pretty doggone healthy. Hopefully, he can stay healthy this year and enjoy his year. Knock on wood.”
The rumors regarding Peyton Manning’s retirement will likely grow or shrink based on how the Denver Broncos perform this season. The team has high hopes for quarterback Brock Osweiler, and a poor season from Manning could hasten the team’s decision to see exactly what they have in the backup.
[Image via Getty Images]