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Irsay: No ones knows if Manning will ever play again

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Colts owner Jim Irsay has said in a variety of ways that he plans to bring Peyton Manning back to the Colts in 2012 if Manning is healthy.

A fact that shouldn’t be forgotten: No one knows if Manning will ever be healthy again.

Irsay pointed this out during in Monday press conference. He simply wasn’t sure if Manning will ever play again. Manning says that he was speaking with former Vice Chairman Bill Polian about his recovery Monday before Polian was fired.

“That’s what Bill and I were talking about when he was pulled away — I asked him about my physical checkpoints,” Manning told Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com. “I wanted to know if he thought Feb. 7 or 8 [was] a good time for the next one and he told me just make it March 1st. Honestly, I don’t know. My rehab is a marathon.”

The next contractual checkpoint is March 8, when Manning’s bonus is due.

A lot of be written about Manning before then, but so much of this story is about Manning being able to prove he can play again over the next two months. And no one knows if that will happen.

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63 Responses to “Irsay: No ones knows if Manning will ever play again”
  1. northshorejag says: Jan 3, 2012 10:13 AM

    I still say Manning will be the next HC

    perhaps Caldwell will remain DC

  2. dexterismyhero says: Jan 3, 2012 10:13 AM

    Jughead will be back!!!!!

    Irsay is just a sick looking person also….

  3. golonger says: Jan 3, 2012 10:16 AM

    I do…he is done…..he will never suit up again….a bad ending to a disappointing career!

  4. musiccitymiracle says: Jan 3, 2012 10:16 AM

    If Manning doesn’t come back, expect to the Colts at the bottom of the AFC South for several years. Luck will follow Bradford’s trajectory at least until the Colts get a decent supporting cast.

    Also, do you proofread your articles? just wondering.

  5. southpaw2k says: Jan 3, 2012 10:16 AM

    While Manning’s future deserves to be the focus of nearly any Colts-related article, what about the rest of the impending free agents on the team? Even if he comes back, he won’t have Reggie Wayne to throw to, Jeff Saturday won’t be his center, and Robert Mathis won’t be on the defensive side of the ball. And that’s just for starters. The Colts are going to be a bad team for years to come, and that’s still even with Manning coming back.

  6. jimmysimpson55 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:17 AM

    I am sick of not really knowing what the heck is wrong with Manning. He risks turning himself into another diva soap opera if he doesn’t just have someone spell out what exactly is wrong with him. All we know is ‘neck problems.’

  7. weepingjebus says: Jan 3, 2012 10:17 AM

    I wonder if Cooper Manning is tired of Peyton chasing him around with a vial of ether and surgical knives.

  8. jimmymcnultysbottleofjameson says: Jan 3, 2012 10:18 AM

    I hate to say this but I don’t see Manning coming back. If he really wants to risk paralysis by playing then that’s pretty stupid. He won an SB and is 1st ballot HOF, why risk it.

  9. wte1 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:19 AM

    I still can’t believe Irsay fired his drinking buddy.

  10. abengalfan says: Jan 3, 2012 10:26 AM

    Curoius how fans feel about Peyton playing again after 3 neck surgeries. To me the risk is not worth it.
    So using the thumbs up or down please vote.
    Thumbs up if you want to see Peyton again.
    Thumbs down if you wish he would retire and not risk further injury.
    I vote thumbs down

  11. 1972wasalongtimeago says: Jan 3, 2012 10:28 AM

    I can’t believe they get 13 years of Manning, suck for one year, and then get 13 years of Andrew Luck. Freaking Indianapolis? It would be one thing if they were still the Baltimore Colts and they were a real football town. But Indianapolis? My goodness.

  12. i10east says: Jan 3, 2012 10:31 AM

    *insert flabbergasted comment here*

  13. supremeomega says: Jan 3, 2012 10:32 AM

    I am one of the few Colts fans that knew Manning was done from the get go. Terrible to see a career end like this without another shot at a SB…but his long term health and family is much more important. Peyton has been an ambassador for the NFL but I expect that a doctor will eventually step in and tell him that it would be foolish to play anymore.

    Fans frequently elevate their athletic heroes to god status. I have seen fan posts that Manning will play 4-5 more years. That’s just delusional. Unless he can wear a red Jersey and never get hit again it is going to be too risky. I hope Irsay gives him a FO job, but I assume he will end up sitting with Tony and Rodney and Dan on SNF in the near future.

  14. test2402 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:33 AM

    Tim Tebow will play again.

  15. mattolikesthevikes says: Jan 3, 2012 10:35 AM

    Enter luck under center.

  16. dchuwo says: Jan 3, 2012 10:36 AM

    And to pay Manning 28 mil without definitely saying that Manning can play would be crazy.

  17. eagleswin says: Jan 3, 2012 10:41 AM

    Irsay pointed this out during in Monday press conference. He simply wasn’t sure if Manning will ever play again.
    ————————————–

    This thought should’ve crossed his mind last year before he signed Manning to that ridiculous contract extension without undergoing a physical.

  18. steelerdynasty2010 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:42 AM

    warming up for my i told you so rant…….

  19. rc33 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:43 AM

    It’d take some guts but this is Indy’s chance to move on.
    Get what you can for Peyton and draft Andrew Luck. Even if Manning is ready to go next year I have no idea what kind of team they’ll be putting around him…but I’m pretty confident it won’t be good.
    Not many teams get a chance to follow a HOF QB by selecting the best QB prospect in a decade.
    Time to start over again.
    And save $28 million in the process.
    What’ll be REALLY interesting is what Manning’s market value will be (at age 35 and coming off the injury) and what teams can actually fit him under the cap.

  20. Derty Ernie says: Jan 3, 2012 10:46 AM

    I wouldn’t be as shocked if he came back to play but would be shocked if he was effective again. His greatness was predicated on being able to scan the field and making the right decisions. Cannot beleive he wasn’t told by countless doctors that his mobility in his neck may be very limited.

    Probably time to give it up.

  21. bspurloc says: Jan 3, 2012 10:47 AM

    .
    colts mentality…..
    If we play PEYTON in 2012 he may get injured before the playoffs…………….

  22. riverhorsey says: Jan 3, 2012 10:48 AM

    Manning will be a different uniform next year.

  23. brintfatre says: Jan 3, 2012 10:55 AM

    Archie will be the next GM and Peyton will be the coach.

  24. damnws6 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:55 AM

    I say come to the Jets. If you can go, then you’re our starter. If you can’t, then you can tutor that moron Sanchez and bring some class to Rex and my Jets. So please. come!

  25. gmen1987 says: Jan 3, 2012 10:55 AM

    jimmysimpson55 says:
    Jan 3, 2012 10:17 AM
    I am sick of not really knowing what the heck is wrong with Manning. He risks turning himself into another diva soap opera if he doesn’t just have someone spell out what exactly is wrong with him. All we know is ‘neck problems.’

    ===================================
    I’m sure Petyon Manning doesn’t know much more about his future than what you and I do. This is uncharted territory. Manning has had treatment that has never been done before by an active athlete and he has to travel outside of the country to get it done.

    The Colts have to look back in their history at a QB named Bert Jones who had to retire (though as a LA Ram) because of a neck injury.

    Time for the Colts to move on. Would totally stupid for them not to take Luck.

  26. hmpennypacker says: Jan 3, 2012 10:59 AM

    Does anyone know the Colts cap status if they aren’t on the hook for his salary? Would this enable them to resign some of the key free agents guys?

  27. djstat says: Jan 3, 2012 11:02 AM

    jimmysimpson55

    You are really stupid or can’t read. Manning has had 3 neck surgeries and had two vertabrea fused together. That is a major neck injuy. It has been written about and takes a long time to rehab and if reinjured manning could face being in a wheel chair.

  28. golonger says: Jan 3, 2012 11:02 AM

    They say every blind squirrel finds a nut….well, the Colts did for a while…now its back to where they have been for 4 decades….a pathetic excuse for a franchise. Except for a few years under Manning, they have been pathetic since 1978……..can anyone say L.A. Colts

  29. cmstrick says: Jan 3, 2012 11:05 AM

    Translation: “I wanted to draft Luck and the Polians didn’t.”

  30. stevincinci says: Jan 3, 2012 11:06 AM

    Andy Dalton will have more success than Andrew Luck. You heard it here first. To much expectation for this dude. He’ll try to hard.

  31. 6ball says: Jan 3, 2012 11:09 AM

    .

    “I was talking to him when he he was called away ”

    I’ll bet Polian had no idea why Peyton kissed him. Although the post firing email stating “you’re dead to me now” may be an indicator

    .

  32. mrfrostyj says: Jan 3, 2012 11:17 AM

    Irsay is about 6 years too late in firing the Polians. Every top notch player on that team is a free agent this year and that team won’t be able to afford to keep them all AND draft #1 AND keep Manning. Sad thing is Bill Polian will con another owner in to giving him a job based on the Manning draft to ruin them too.

  33. wayupsouth says: Jan 3, 2012 11:22 AM

    What is Fred Sanford’s picture doing on this post?

  34. joe6606 says: Jan 3, 2012 11:32 AM

    Irsay is smart enough to realize what should be obvious to anyone…no Dr. is ever going to permit a player who has undergone surgical neck fusion to play football, particularly since Peyton is a QB.

    I’ve said it all year, Irsay knew this all season long and has been directing his team to tank so he can draft Luck.

    The Polians, apparently are blinded by their friendship with Manning, and seem to hold on to some hope for a miracle. I just don’t think that’s reasonable, so they had to be pushed out. Manning will be next.

    It sucks to replace a legend, but it’s better to not wait. The Steelers were set back a decade when Bradshaw duped them into thinking he could return from injuries in 1983, causing them, in part, to pass on Marino. Look how that turned out (Cliff Stoudt, David Woodley, Mark Malone, Bubby Brister, Kordell Stewart, etc). Of course Manning thinks he can come back, but if I were a GM/owner, I’d never let him back on the field.

  35. blackqbwhiterb says: Jan 3, 2012 11:32 AM

    Hard to believe the Colts organization as a whole signed a deal with Manning at age 35 like they did. No physical required? And if there was a physical, then how do you explain? Even healthy last winter that’s a lot of scratch…..

  36. kelvinmchale says: Jan 3, 2012 11:38 AM

    The demise of Indy is further proof that The Patriot Way is the only way.

  37. be1078 says: Jan 3, 2012 11:50 AM

    To say that Mannings career is disappointing is ridiculous, please tell me that any sports fan would believe that! He may not have 5 yrs but I think he definitely deserves another shot and be able to choose to retire a colt. Manning made Indy relevant to the football world. Luck has ties with the Mannings and he will be fine being a back up to arguably one of the best of all time. Defense of linemen is what the colts really need, some big men to plug up the middle and STOP THE RUN!

  38. wozzmann1955 says: Jan 3, 2012 11:50 AM

    What records does Jugghead hold now?
    He was supposed to break all of Favre’s records by the time he was finished.And this was known to be fact 5 yrs ago,,so it must be

  39. toosano says: Jan 3, 2012 11:54 AM

    JimmyMcNultyandtherestofyournameiforget;
    I highly doubt he is at risk for being paralyzed. The bad part of his neck is fused solid. Unless there is another bad part of his neck, he should be good to go
    or, unless he suffered permanent nerve damage from delaying the inevitable surgery, prohibiting him from rebuilding his arm strength.
    I’ve had two of the operations that he had and I’m here to tell you, it takes a year to fully recover from one. Also, when they fuse your neck, they increase the space between the vertebrae by up to 3/8″ which wreaks havoc on tendons and muscles, which I would think his conditioning would let him recover from that somewhat quickly.
    So, based on what I believe, he’ll be playing for another team soon.

  40. patsfiend says: Jan 3, 2012 11:58 AM

    Good luck, Manning, wherever you end up. Missed the great Pats vs. Colts battle this year.

    I hope Manning ends up with the TD / yardage records over Favre. Doesn’t look like it’s going to happen, now though.

  41. yevrag3535 says: Jan 3, 2012 12:08 PM

    Manning is a loser. Won a lot of game but really never won the hearts of the fans. He and his goofy brother have done too many TV commericals and they grew really thin as two guys who whould do anything for money. So good bye and good luck.

  42. jasonculhane says: Jan 3, 2012 12:11 PM

    Man, it kinda sounds like he’s not gonna be signed to that bonus. You would think Irsay would have liked to see his quarterback play an actual NFL game or a full padded practice before March 1st to make a decision, but this isn’t going to happen. The smart thing is to get Luck

  43. tampajoey says: Jan 3, 2012 12:28 PM

    Oh, just give Peyton Manning that $28 million dollars!

    Just like Robert Irsay gave Jim Irsay all of his money and a NFL football team and a silver spoon in his mouth.

  44. usmutts says: Jan 3, 2012 12:28 PM

    From a non-partison view, I think maybe brintfabre has it about right.

    I just looks like the Mannings, frere and fils, are in complete charge of the entire Colts franchise. And neither want any competition from Luck. Manning will declare himself fit ( whether he is or not ) just prior to the draft and instruct ( ie, order ) that the first draft pick be traded. If Payton says trade the pick it will be traded.

    As much as I’ve liked watching Manning play, you have to understand that he and his dad are concerned only with preserving Peyton’s status and, most of all, the money. They already persuaded the Colts to give him a mega-contract after two neck surgeries, and got paid $25m this year without playing. They will do what they need to do to collect the next $28m. Don’t be surprised if the Mannings were behind the Polian firing, as I understand Polian was very much a Luck guy.

    I used to think more of the Mannings. I thought Peyton would offer to restructure his contract to make it easier to take Luck, who could have a Rodgers-like internship. But Peyton has shown no interest whatsoever in mentoring his eventual replacement, not entirely unlike a Favre-ian attitude.

    I’m just really disappointed in the Manning boys, except for Eli, who somehow keeps winning games despite walking around on the field looking like a little boy who just got his bicycle stolen.

  45. gmen1987 says: Jan 3, 2012 12:32 PM

    mrfrostyj says:
    Jan 3, 2012 11:17 AM
    Irsay is about 6 years too late in firing the Polians. Every top notch player on that team is a free agent this year and that team won’t be able to afford to keep them all AND draft #1 AND keep Manning. Sad thing is Bill Polian will con another owner in to giving him a job based on the Manning draft to ruin them too.
    ===================================
    Polian will get another job real soon. He made several good picks other than P. Manning that made the Colts a powerhouse (at least in the regular season) for years and he built the only successful years in the Buffalo Bills franchise.

  46. gmen1987 says: Jan 3, 2012 12:34 PM

    toosano says:
    Jan 3, 2012 11:54 AM
    JimmyMcNultyandtherestofyournameiforget;
    I highly doubt he is at risk for being paralyzed. The bad part of his neck is fused solid. Unless there is another bad part of his neck, he should be good to go
    or, unless he suffered permanent nerve damage from delaying the inevitable surgery, prohibiting him from rebuilding his arm strength.
    I’ve had two of the operations that he had and I’m here to tell you, it takes a year to fully recover from one. Also, when they fuse your neck, they increase the space between the vertebrae by up to 3/8″ which wreaks havoc on tendons and muscles, which I would think his conditioning would let him recover from that somewhat quickly.
    So, based on what I believe, he’ll be playing for another team soon.

    ==================================
    Are you a doctor, Goobs (that would make you Dr. Goobs)? If not then, how do you know what the risk to PManning is to play again? Other players who had this had to retire, including another Colt QB named Bert Jones.

  47. caseyanthonymunoz says: Jan 3, 2012 12:40 PM

    When he has a winning record in the postseason, come talk to me. Until then, he’s just a regular season, indoor QB stat padder.

  48. 12greaterthan4 says: Jan 3, 2012 1:00 PM

    Wow, does anyone proof read anymore?

  49. dexterismyhero says: Jan 3, 2012 1:12 PM

    @musiccitymiracle says:Jan 3, 2012 10:16 AM

    If Manning doesn’t come back, expect to the Colts at the bottom of the AFC South for several years. Luck will follow Bradford’s trajectory at least until the Colts get a decent supporting cast.

    Also, do you proofread your articles? just wondering.
    ==================================
    also wondering…do you proofread your own posts……jacka$$….

  50. lance227 says: Jan 3, 2012 1:15 PM

    What a Brinks bank heist Irsay & Polian pulled! Waited until week 15 to bring in a decent QB (which almost cost them!) and managed to steal the #1 pick with the most talented 0-13 team in the history of pro football. Is King Roger asleep at the controls or what???

  51. morganwick says: Jan 3, 2012 1:19 PM

    Interesting subplot: If Manning never plays again, he’s eligible for the HOF the same year as Brett Favre. That sounds almost unthinkable – Favre already had a HOF career when Manning was drafted. Beyond that, would the HOF induct two quarterbacks the same year (which never happens), or would one of the two first-ballot QBs get bumped to the second ballot solely because of timing?

  52. hmpennypacker says: Jan 3, 2012 1:20 PM

    Did everyone miss Irsay say the Colts are in rebuilding mode? That usually means going in a different direction. Like getting younger at quarterback after cutting Peyton before March. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them use some of the cash they save on resigning some of the veteran guys like Wayne and Saturday.

    I think Peyton is gone and as Kravitz said, Indianapolis is a small market, so drafting Luck to start from day one makes sense. If you think you can catch lightning in a bottle twice.

  53. bingobrown12 says: Jan 3, 2012 1:20 PM

    Manning will be back and will have a new rule named
    after him.”The Manning Rule” ,for his safety when and opposing player touches him while holding the ball it will be a sack.The Colts will trade the #1 pick
    for more picks to shore up his line and will get a
    backup QB in the 2nd round.

  54. ppdoc13 says: Jan 3, 2012 1:21 PM

    If I am Jeff Fisher the last place I want to go is to Indy. It is a small town that barely supports it’s team. Granted they grabbed the brass ring with Luck, but the local support sucks. It took untl Peytons 3 or 4th year before they were selling out. It just isn’t a good football town. He’d be better off in St. Louis with Sam Bradford.

  55. atthemurph says: Jan 3, 2012 1:29 PM

    Manning’s problem isn’t the vertebrae fusion, it’s the nerve damage in his right arm from the neck injury. The fusion surgery limits his flexibility but shouldn’t cause any greater risk to becoming paralyzed.

    His nerve issue is the one that is going to prevent him from playing. He doesn’t have an NFL arm now and may never again. He isn’t going to go out on the field with a noodle arm and 37 year old legs and be anything other than a sitting duck and INT machine as teams figure out he can’t go long.

    Firing Polian is just Irsay’s warning shot that Manning is going to be cut loose. The hew GM, whoever that may be, is going to take the brunt of the criticism for releasing manning and taking the wrath of the fans like Ted Thompson did in GB from my ignorant fellow Packers fans when he dumped Favre.

    Polian was never getting rid of manning but the new guy has to. It will be in his contract.

  56. imag3d says: Jan 3, 2012 1:39 PM

    I predict Manning will be in a different uniform next year… and that uniform will be a suit and tie.

  57. carlsaganist says: Jan 3, 2012 1:39 PM

    I am a Pats fan, I must say It would be lame if Manning went out like this. If they do let him go, I hope he plays for another team. He makes any team a contender.

  58. toolkien says: Jan 3, 2012 1:42 PM

    If we’ve learned one thing about first ballot hall of famers who turned franchises around “single handedly” after two decades of horrible football, is that they call the shots. They get to be GM and select head coaches and select schemes/game plans and get to broker free agent deals and conduct the draft. Bad neck or not, Manning won the team a Super Bowl after many, many years of ineptitude and he gets to make every last decision for the team or they are ingrates, and any fans that support the team if they don’t are ungrateful fans who aren’t real fans of the team for not putting one player above it. Or something convoluted like that. So I expect the name to be changed to the Indianapolis P-mannings and Manning will be named Vice President, GM, Head Coach with an option to start himself, bad neck and all. Anything less is an insult. Manning put the Colts back on the map, is the face of the franchise, and pulled the team back from oblivions. And facemappers from oblivion get to do whatever they want.

  59. pigskin28 says: Jan 3, 2012 1:56 PM

    I find it strange that everyone is focused on march 8 and not on why Manning was given a huge new contract when there was no certainty of his future as a player.
    Someone dropped the bball then. If am in Irsay’s shoes I question allowing someone who quickly gave Manning that contract before being absolutely assured of his health, the opportinity to keep his job.
    Or treat as family a guy who knowing hos health chose to holdmy organization hostage with that contract demand as family.

  60. 1historian says: Jan 3, 2012 2:25 PM

    Reminder – 10 years ago Jim Irsay wanted a new stadium for the colts, and one of the ways he got what he wanted from the worthy burgers of indy was to threaten to leave indy for L.A. Had the burgers not capitulated and built the ‘Lucas Oil Stadium’ they would have moved to L.A. the year after they won the SB and when they ran on the field in L.A. for the 1st game there the announcer would have said “Ladies and gentlemen, your world champion los angeles colts.”

    Boy that’s got a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

    FYI – I am a fan of the BALTIMORE COLTS and I have enjoyed this past season. That having been said – I wish Manning would retire because I really believe he is just one good hit from a wheelchair and I would hate to see him giving his HOF acceptance speech sitting in one.

    Is there anything so sad as watching someone who was GREAT in his prime hang on when he shouldn’t?

  61. mayhemmatt300 says: Jan 3, 2012 2:30 PM

    Of course he can play again. Don’t be so foolish people.. They are milking it as hard as they can. What do you think Manning has been doing this offseason? Watching tape and licking his chops watching all this poor play. Stop drinking the kool aide people.. Peyton is being way too cool for a guy that may never play again.. He’s fine.

  62. namriverrat69 says: Jan 3, 2012 4:02 PM

    Having had similar surgery but had 3 vertebae fused together the odds are slimmer that he will improve than he will be worse.

    It is worth googling in a little depth to see what this is all about. It is not just a simple surgery when there are so many nerves interconnecting and interwoben in the spine from head to the coccyx.

  63. buffalomafia says: Jan 3, 2012 4:23 PM

    I work on medical feild & thete is no way & I mean no wsy Manning could come back if he has any screws in his neck cause one slip & he will not be walking!

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