Peyton Manning is an NFL record-holder, arguably the best quarterback in the game right now and a surefire first-ballot Hall of Famer. But his boss, who knows a thing or two about playing quarterback in the NFL, says Manning does not get the recognition he deserves.
John Elway, the Denver Broncos’ executive vice president of football operations and a two-time Super Bowl winner, said in an interview with the New York Daily News that people tend to forget that Manning has a championship to his name, as well.
“He’s won a Super Bowl. For some reason he doesn’t seem to get the credit for having won one Super Bowl already,” Elway said. “I think maybe the comparison is Tom [Brady] going to five and Peyton having been to two and winning one, that may be it.”
That has long been the narrative with Manning: He puts up astounding regular-season numbers but rarely gets it done in the playoffs. That was the case last year, when the eventual champion Baltimore Ravens upset the top-seeded Broncos in the divisional round. This season, Manning’s numbers are better than ever — he broke Brady’s NFL record with 55 touchdown passes — but he’ll have to take down his longtime nemesis, the New England Patriots, this Sunday to clinch his third Super Bowl bid.
“Fair or not, that’s the way it is,” Elway said. “As a quarterback, especially the level you’re at with Peyton, that’s what they are going to look at. If we can win a championship this year, it’s going to help with Peyton’s legacy. Even if we don’t, I think the year that he’s had this year is going to still help with his legacy. He’s had a tremendous year. For some reason, Peyton is not getting the credit — he’s been there twice, and he got one. You get to the point where Peyton is, the greatness that he’s had, there is always someone trying to put chinks in the armor, and that’s what they go after.”
The Broncos have already lost to the Patriots once this season, blowing a 24-0 halftime lead in an eventual 34-31 overtime loss back in Week 12. This will be the first time Manning has faced New England in the playoffs since the 2006 season, when he led the Indianapolis Colts over the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game en route to his lone Super Bowl title.