Peyton Manning has never been right. Back in August, when Manning and the Denver Broncos first team offense failed to score a single offensive touchdown during the preseason, fans could tell something just was not right.
Then, last month, CBS4 Denver’s Vic Lombardi reported Manning was dealing with a torn plantar fascia ahead of the Broncos matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs. That game turned out to be the worst of Manning’s career, a 29-13 loss wherein the five-time NFL MVP posted a passer rating of 0.0. Manning hasn’t dressed since that debacle.
Following that game, this writer reported that Manning’s foot injury was far from new. In fact, we reported Manning had been dealing with a foot injury as far back as the Manning Passing Academy in the summer. Lombardi, and other news outlets, had written similar reports.
Yesterday, Archie Manning, the future Hall of Famer’s equally famous father, confirmed MHH’s report, telling New Orleans’ WDSU-TV, “He’s really had this foot problem that’s been going on for five or six months.”
Again, this news should come as no surprise to readers of the Mile High Huddle. However, the question now is about where the Broncos go from here.
This week it appeared that Manning was on his way back to the field in the near future. He had practiced twice this week and by all accounts had looked sharp in his limited drill work. On Friday, however, Manning’s foot injury flared up again and he sat out practice.
Head coach Gary Kubiak showed little concern about Manning’s setback following the Broncos workout.
“He came in this morning and was a little sore,” Kubiak said. “So we said, ‘Okay, we’ll stop for this weekend, and we’ll go from there.’ We’ll pick it up on Monday. It was nothing. It just happens.”
Manning will travel with the team to Pittsburgh for the first time since his injury and is expected to watch this weekend’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers from the Broncos sideline.
All of these conflicting signs and signals have left Broncos fans asking more questions than ever before. However, one question seems to permeate this conversation. If Manning really never has been healthy this season, why wouldn’t Broncos fans want to see what he could do after a month to rest and recuperate?
If Manning can return to practice next week and look ready to play against the Cincinnati Bengals, the Broncos will finally have to answer some of Broncos Country’s biggest questions in the ongoing Manning saga.
It may not be as entertaining as the Star Wars saga, but it feels just as incomplete.
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