After 18-years number 18 is hanging up the cleats. After winning Super Bowl 50 against Cam Newtown and the Carolina Panthers Peyton Manning can now ride out to the sunset on top.
Manning will most definitely go down as one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game. He will retire as the NFL’s all-time leader in passing touchdowns (539), passing yards (71,940) and quarterbacks wins (186 tied with Brett Favre).
Manning, who played 14 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, was a first-ballot Hall of Famer-in-waiting before spinal fusion surgery caused him to miss the 2011 season. He went to the Broncos as a free agent in 2012 and authored the most prolific season of any quarterback in history in 2013. The Broncos made two Super Bowl trips in Manning’s final three seasons. Manning also follows in the Elway’s footsteps, retiring as a Super Bowl winner.
When he embraced New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick after the Broncos’ AFC Championship Game victory in January, NFL Films cameras captured audio of Manning hinting to the coach that the 2015 season would be his last.
“This might be my last rodeo. So it sure has been a pleasure,” Manning said.
The 39-year-old Manning was a Super Bowl MVP, a 14-time Pro Bowl selection and a seven-time first-team All-Pro. His teams made the playoffs in 15 of his 18 seasons, and he reached the 4,000-yard passing mark in 14 seasons.
In the Broncos’ record-setting 2013 season, when they scored a single-season record 606 points — the first time in league history a team topped 600 — Manning set single-season records for passing yards (5,477) and touchdown passes (55). It was the second time Manning threw for at least 49 touchdowns (2004 was the first) — a mark reached only one other time in NFL history (Tom Brady in 2007).
Manning said his final season was the “most unique” of his career.
Manning changed the way that the quarterback position was played and he changed the way of the game. His legacy will forever live on.
The Denver Broncos will hold a news conference at 1 p.m. ET Monday for Manning to discuss his stepping away from the game after 18 seasons and two Super Bowl victories.