Colts say Manning won’t play this year
Posted: Tuesday, December 20, 2011 7:02 pm
By MICHAEL MAROT
AP Sports Writer
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The Colts will have to win their last two games the same way they tried to win their first 14 — without Peyton Manning.
Minutes after the previously winless Colts got their first win, 27-13 over Tennessee, team vice chairman Bill Polian said the four-time league MVP will not play this season though he has begun throwing to teammates at the team complex.
The comments came in a rare, five-paragraph postgame statement Polian made from the podium. He did not take questions.
“It was determined by the doctors that there was no chance he (Manning) would play this year,” Polian said, referring to a Thursday meeting. “His rehabilitation has not come far enough to make it prudent for him to step on the field in game action. He may practice in some very scripted and circumscribed circumstances if he wishes. That’s entirely up to him.”
Apparently, Manning is already doing that.
Polian confirmed that the four-time league MVP threw in pads and a helmet after Wednesday’s full practice ended. The session included running back Joseph Addai, center Jeff Saturday, receiver Anthony Gonzalez and a receiver from the practice squad.
There were rumors all week that Manning had started throwing with teammates, but players and coaches repeatedly said there was nothing new in Manning’s workout regimen. On Sunday’s pregame show, Fox Sports reported that Manning had thrown to receivers and running backs this week and that Manning still hoped to play this season.
He has practiced sparingly since having neck surgery in May. The Colts thought Manning would be ready to play when training camp opened and again when the regular-season started, but the recovery took far longer than expected. He was activated before the regular-season opener, but with the compressed nerve still causing weakness in Manning’s throwing arm, he opted for a more invasive fusion.
On Dec. 1, doctors announced the fusion had healed firmly and that Manning could increase the intensity and length of his workouts.
“Wednesday, after we finished our full team practice, Peyton went through a prescribed rehabilitation session, which consisted of about 30 throws and seven or eight handoffs,” Polian said.
Published in The Messenger 12.20.11