During Peyton Manning’s tenure with the Colts, the 16th game of the season was usually the best day of the year for his backup.
At some point during the contest, which the Colts rarely needed to secure playoff position, Manning would head to the bench and Jim Sorgi or Curtis Painter would come trotting onto the field for an extended appearance that almost always served to make Colts fans double up on their hopes that no injury would befall their starting quarterback. It was like the football equivalent of Caddy Day at the Bushwood Country Club pool, brief and something everyone hoped you’d survive with minimal damage.
Brock Osweiler will have to stick to eating his Baby Ruth bar on the sideline. Mike Klis of the Denver Post reports that Manning is expected to play the entire game as the Broncos try to nail down a first-round bye and, possibly, the top seed in the conference. The Broncos will know whether that top seed is available before their game kicks off, but the Patriots will be playing at the same time so there’s probably not much chance of them changing course.
It’s been a season of new experiences for Manning. He’s adapted to them quite well so far, which leads us to believe he’ll be just fine when it comes to playing all the way through the final game of the season.