Peyton Manning Wins Super Bowl; Retire As A Colt Next?

Intro: On Sunday night, Peyton Manning became the first quarterback in NFL history to win two Super Bowl with two different teams. If Manning decides to retire, will he re-join the Colts for one day?


INDIANAPOLIS – The weekend went about as good as Jim Irsay could have hoped.

On Saturday, Irsay learned that two Colts Ring of Honor inductees would next be heading into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The following night, the Colts Owner watched the man, who has played the (unquestioned) most significant role in shaping his franchise, possibly end his historic NFL career with a second Lombardi Trophy.

In the week leading up to Super Bowl 50, Irsay spoke about his feelings of watching Manning in what could very likely be his final game.

"I told him I hope you can feel the energy of (Indianapolis) pulling for you," Irsay said about his post-AFC Championship game conversation with Manning. "It's just so fitting that he gets this chance, Super Bowl 50, to compete one last time, most likely.

"I think it's just a credit to his football knowledge, really almost being like a shaman in terms of being able to master and come off an injury, at his age, come back in there and go into the playoffs and earn these victories. That's just tremendous and we are so happy for him. We will be rooting for him and I just made sure I helped him out with some Super Bowl tickets."

Those in attendance on Sunday night, watched Manning win his 200th career game, the most ever for an NFL quarterback.

While it wasn't the most aesthetically pleasing performance from Manning, he did become the first quarterback in NFL history to capture a Super Bowl with two different teams.

After the 24-10 victory, Manning tiptoed around the elephant in the room of a pending retirement.

"Ashley and I, we'll have that talk at some point, but we are going to enjoy this tonight and celebrate," Manning, who turns 40 years old in March, said on Sunday night. "Our kids are four and they are in Pre-K and the teachers say, 'You really shouldn't pull them out of school.' We are pulling them out! We are going somewhere and we are going to get the heck out of town.

"I have one thing I'll say, I've had good experience with making some decisions, choosing where to go to college, staying for my senior year in college and deciding which NFL team to play for in free agency four years ago. I've taken time on all those, I've prayed about it, I've talked to some people about it and I think I will do that with this. But I have a peace about it whichever way it goes. I'm glad I have been able to get through these two weeks with the focus staying on the team, because that is what it has been about this year."

While Manning mulls his decision, Irsay is ready if No. 18 does decide the cleats are being hung up for good.

In 13 seasons, Manning led the Colts to heights they had longed for as a franchise.

"He literally transforms your organization," Irsay says. "Peyton is just the quintessential individual. On the field, he's all about winning and winning the right way. And off the field, he cares so much and takes so much time just to help the community. Everybody knows what he's done here in Indianapolis, the Children's Hospital is just one example of so many things he's been involved with here.

"One of the greats of all time. I just run out of superlatives to heap on him because, honestly, he is everything that you look for in a football player and an individual."

That decision in 2012 was the furthest thing from easy for Irsay, when it comes to the emotional aspect.

Irsay's hope in 2012 was to have a win-win situation with Manning moving on, and the Colts beginning a new era.

Some four years later, that has happened.

"It worked out great for both sides," Irsay says.

"I told (Manning), we would love to have him in here to retire as a Colt. We would love it. I told him, 'That airplane is waiting for you. The red carpet is clean and lined for you.' We would be honored to have him come home and sign that contract for a day.

"That would be really special."

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