Peyton Manning
(Getty Images)

First, some numbers:

A record of 1-2. 

68% completion rating, 286 ypg, 3 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions.

2 pick-sixes.

Above are the Super Bowl stats of Peyton Manning, you may have heard of him. He’s only one of the best and most popular quarterbacks in the history of the NFL and is playing this weekend in Super Bowl 50 against the Carolina Panthers. Historically speaking, Peyton Manning has had one of the best careers in the history of the NFL. Peyton holds countless regular season records, and will likely go down as one of the best quarterbacks of all time when he decides to hang it up. However, the records and the accolades are incapable of removing the tarnish present on Manning’s resume left by the statistics shown above. In order for Peyton Manning to seriously be considered as one of the all-time greats (in conversations with the Joe Montana’s and Terry Bradshaw’s of the world), he NEEDS to win his second Super Bowl on Sunday.

The narrative for Peyton Manning this season has been a strange one for him. Since his arrival in Denver following multiple neck surgeries and his departure from his beloved Colts, Peyton has been the orchestrator of one of the most potent offenses in the history of the league. Sure, his balls didn’t have the same zip on them that they once had, but Peyton was able to move the ball down the field with ease, carving up opposing defenses. As early as Week 1 of this season, all of this changed for Manning. His throws were soft, he lacked energy, and he seemed entirely incapable of performing the way he once did. Peyton was a disaster and his play was a serious detriment to his team. It seemed as if the neck surgeries and years of play had finally caught up to him. Honestly, Peyton looked done.

(USA TODAY Sports)
(USA TODAY Sports)

Following a series of poor games characterized by untimely interceptions and an inability to throw the ball deep, Peyton Manning was replaced by Brock Osweiler and took a seat on the bench. It’s hard to characterize Peyton’s removal from the starting lineup as a “benching” in the traditional sense, as he apparently was playing hurt for most of the season. However, his emergence back into the starting lineup following a poor performance from Brock Osweiler in Week 17 against the Chargers happened so quickly that it suggested that, had Osweiler continued his high level of play, he would have been starting this Sunday in place of Manning.

Regardless, Peyton Manning will be the starting quarterback of the Denver Broncos on Sunday, a game that means a lot for his legacy. Up to this point, Peyton’s career has been known as one of great regular season success and poor postseason production (evidenced by the above stats). This year, the script seemed to have flipped, with Peyton’s best play coming in the postseason as opposed to the regular season. Hopefully this will be a good omen for things to come.

I have a hard time believing that Peyton Manning has enjoyed himself this season. The combination of injuries, being benched, and the forgotten Al Jazeera HGH scandal has created a cocktail of general unhappiness with Manning, and I think it shows. However, a Super Bowl victory on Sunday would be the greatest remedy for Peyton, and would allow him to ride off into the sunset on the highest of peaks. No matter what happens, Peyton will go down as one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game. But all people remember, when looking back at the league years down the line, are what these players do in the biggest moments. 2-2 in Super Bowls (having won them with two different teams by the way) is significantly different from 1-3. With a victory on Sunday, it may be impossible to deny Peyton’s place at the top of the list.

https://i0.wp.com/www.myfantasysportstalk.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/BIO_Mini-Bios_0_Peyton-Manning_0_FIX_SF_HD_768x432-16x9.jpg?fit=768%2C432&ssl=1https://i0.wp.com/www.myfantasysportstalk.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/BIO_Mini-Bios_0_Peyton-Manning_0_FIX_SF_HD_768x432-16x9.jpg?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Kyle KirbyAFC WestAnalysisDenver BroncosFootballNFLRecent Posts#Broncos,panthers,Peyton Manning,Super Bowl 50First, some numbers: A record of 1-2.  68% completion rating, 286 ypg, 3 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions. 2 pick-sixes. Above are the Super Bowl stats of Peyton Manning, you may have heard of him. He's only one of the best and most popular quarterbacks in the history of the NFL and is playing...Why go anywhere else for sports and entertainment?