Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning got the green light to continue his playing career on Monday after a thorough exam on his surgically repaired neck. Manning’s future was potentially in doubt based on the examination, but his annual checkup showed that there are no structural issues and he is free to resume playing football.
The Denver Post is reporting that all is well and the soon-to-be 38-year-old quarterback will return to the team in 2014. Manning underwent four neck surgeries in 2011, including a cervical fusion. His contract mandates that he undergo a yearly examination on the area.
Manning said during Super Bowl week that he had no intention of retiring after the season, but obviously it may not have been his decision had the exam not gone well.
Manning has been performing at an elite level since returning to the NFL after sitting out the 2011 season thanks to the neck surgeries. During his time with the Broncos over the past two seasons, the team is 26-6 in the regular season and reached the Super Bowl this season. He also won his fifth MVP award this year.
For the 2013 season Manning also broke the NFL’s single-season records for passing yards (5,477) and passing touchdowns (55), while the Broncos broke the league record for points scored (606). Though they got blown out by the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl, Denver should return a fantastic squad in 2014 with a real chance to repeat as AFC champions.
Manning is chasing another Super Bowl ring, and the fact that he has been cleared for the 2014 season is huge for both him and the Broncos. Now the team can focus on patching the holes on its roster and building out from around him.
With the level he is performing at it wouldn’t be surprising if Manning played another few seasons as long as he’s healthy.