Cleat Geeks

The Manning News Conference

Today Manning made it official. After 18 years, Peyton Manning is retiring from the NFL. Here are some notes from his press conference that took place at the UCHealth Training Center Broncos headquarters in Englewood, Colorado.

Joe Ellis Broncos President and CEO. “No player threw more touchdown passes than Manning did JoeEllisduring his 4 years in Denver.” Ellis made sure in his short time behind the podium that he made sure everyone watching was aware that he did more for the Broncos than what the fans saw on Sunday. Ellis, “He made sure everyone felt important.” He then went on to say that most of the charitable things and different ways Peyton gave of himself was mostly low key and under the radar at the request of Manning. He also made it a point of emphasis that Manning made calls to different people and organizations to ask them what he could do to help them. He then concluded his speech by saying that if there was a list of achievements you need to have to be great. “You have checked every box.”

John Elway  Executive Vice President of Football Operations and General Manager. Unlike ElwayManningSpeecheveryone else, it appeared that Elway did not have any notes in front of him, and he simply shot from the hip for his words about Peyton. He was unsure if the Broncos even had a shot at signing him in the beginning. It was a treat for an ex-quarterback to watch Peyton Manning play and prepare for the game.In different parts of his short speech he said the following quotes when referring to Manning; “He made my job easy” “Revolutionized the game.” And he was talking about when he was quarterbacking for a living saying that he tried to read the defence after he snapped the ball as he was dropping back. He said that Manning used every second of the clock to do that and then got a big laugh by saying,”Dang, why didn’t we think of that?” He finished his speech with additional praise for Manning as he said, that he “utilized every once of ability that he was given.”

Gary Kubiak Broncos Head Coach. “I was reminded as a coach in Houston that his record was 10-2 Gary_Kubiakagainst me. He was 10-2 as a quarterback as a starter this season. He was 10-2 as a quarterback against a lot of teams.” Was how Kubiak decided to begin his speech. “It was only 9 months for me, but I will remember it for a lifetime.” He then used the majority of his time to share a great and entertaining story about Manning. Kubiak explained that it was a tough season, 9 weeks in they were 7-2 and after a rough day against Kansas City I told him he was going to get well, he was not very happy. But they stuck to a plan to heal the aging quarterback. And after Manning removed the boot as he was battling through a number of injuries he asked Peyton what the next step was, and he said, “Time to go back to work.”  He described a different side of Manning when he continued the story. “I don’t want to be a distraction, I am not ready to play yet, if I go back out there with the team it will be all about me.” was a quote from Peyton in Kubiak’s story. So the team worked in one part of the complex and Manning in another part, separate, yet together. Then Kubiak described one workout film of Manning’s as “All the sudden it was different.”  That was with 2 weeks left in regular season. During the workout the following day, he sent me a signal. The crowd laughed hard when he said the signal was, as he described it, “Hey we are #1” And after viewing the tape of the workout that night, the next morning Kubiak told Manning “The workout looked great and Oh I got the signal.”

They showed a highlight film next. 2 timothy 4 :7

Then Manning himself walked up to the podium and sat down a portfolio that must have been full ManningSpeechof names and notes for the hardest speech he may ever give. He takes a few minutes to gather himself and starts with, in a trembling voice, “The 1st completed pass I ever threw was to Marshal Faulk.” He went on to describe that memorable 1st game where quarterback and “2nd favorite player only to my dad” Dan Marino provided the opposition. He included a nice Johnny Unitis tribute saying “Old #19 maybee even be a little proud of me.” He followed that up with, “There is just something about 18, 18 is a good number.”

He then started the barrage of “Thank Yous” he started with New Orleans, then said his Senior season as a Tennessee Volunteer was “one of the smartest decisions I ever made.” Thanked the Colts and said they transferred the town of Indianapolis from a basketball and racing town to a football town and refereed to himself and his teammates as “Football Evangelists.” He joked that with Indianapolis he still holds the rookie record for interceptions and joked, “I still hold that record today.”

Pat-Summerall-John-MaddenIn what I thought was the best excerpt from his speech he spoke about his “Paw Paw.” He said his Paw Paw asked him if John Madden and Pat Summerall were going to call any of his games, and in short his responce was that in their 1st year with him at the helm, the team was not very good and “Madden and Summerall didn’t do those type of games.” But, in his 2nd year the two broadcast legends broadcast a game against the Cowboys, which the Colts won. And with that win, “We let the world know that the Colts had arrived.”

He then spoke about the deal in Denver. Thanked his 5 coaches and referred to himself as an “Old quarterback.” He thanked his representation, and spoke about his family. Right before the Super Bowl he explained that one of his kids asked him if this game was going to be his last game, to which he said with a chuckle “Mort and Adam Schefter got to his 5 year old.” He assured us he will absolutely miss the game of football. He then broke into a “I’m going to miss list.” He thanked the fans, and said Patriots fans should miss him “because they got a lot of wins off him.”kubiak-peyton-elway

His speech then went from shaky speech and jokes to being very serious and almost angry. He referenced people who doubted him, and without actually saying it, also at the people who think and or have accused him of performance enhancing drugs. He said that every minute, every drop of sweat and every frame of film was for one goal,”Reverence for this game” He admitted that “There were people who were more talented than me, but no one could out prepare me.” At this point I was almost waiting for him to pound his fist on the podium or take us to church as he preached to us. Turned out, the latter was true as he referenced a passage from the Bible, II Timothy 4:7. In the King James Version it reads, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.”



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