Peyton Manning deflects discussion of return to Indianapolis

Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning throws a pass to wide receiver Eric Decker in the fourth quarter Sunday.
(Jerilee Bennett / McClatchy-Tribune)

It figures to be one of the more interesting, and odd, NFL games this season, Denver’s Peyton Manning returning to Indianapolis on Sunday to face the Colts for the first time.

Manning had no plans to discuss the Week 7 game after Sunday’s victory over Jacksonville, deftly dodging questions about it from reporters in Denver.

“I think the good thing about this game today is that we will come in tomorrow, meet with the coaches, and really try to correct the mistakes from this game,” Manning said Sunday afternoon. “We’ve got some injuries that we’ve got to wait and see on. I think we’ll use tonight and tomorrow to really clean up this Jacksonville game and start on the next opponent later on in the week.”


Asked again about the city where he spent the first 14 years of his career, Manning said: “I’ll probably cover that on Wednesday. Do I have to talk Wednesday still? OK, I’ll do all that Wednesday. I’m going to enjoy this victory and we’ll be ready to play come the rest of the week.”

Manning won a Super Bowl while playing for coach Tony Dungy in Indianapolis. Dungy, now an NBC analyst, said the return will be emotionally challenging for the four-time most valuable player.

“You try to keep everything the same and think it’s going to be normal, it’s not,” Dungy said during the “Sunday Night Football” halftime show.

“Peyton is a creature of habit. He’s going to want that same pregame routine. But when he walks on the field and sees Reggie Wayne, who he threw balls to for 11 years, you can’t just say, ‘Oh, well, I’m not going to shake his hand.’

“The emotion is going to be so tough. The best thing for him is going to be when that kickoff comes.”


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