|2014 Regular Season|
A person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press that Manning will take a $4 million pay cut, from $19 million to $15 million, but that he can make it all back through performance incentives. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because there was no official announcement of the deal.
Even under new management, the Broncos offense can be built to fit Manning's game. The still-lingering question: Will Manning be in Denver to run it? Last week, Manning flew to Denver to meet with Broncos executive John Elway, but he left without making any announcement about his future.
Manning has been mulling his future since the Broncos were bounced from the playoffs by his old team, the Indianapolis Colts, last month. Elway told Manning he wanted him back and asked him not to make a rash decision. Manning said at the Super Bowl he planned to talk with Elway and team president Joe Ellis before making up his mind whether to return for an 18th season in the NFL, fourth in Denver and first with new head coach Gary Kubiak.
After the season-ending 24-13 loss to Indianapolis in the divisional playoffs, Manning made no guarantees about coming back for another season - a change of heart from a month previous, when he said he had every intention of returning. He played the end of this season with a leg injury that hampered his effectiveness. Broncos executive vice president John Elway told Manning to take his time before deciding.
Manning said his right thigh injury hasn't gotten much better in the week since the Denver Broncos were bounced from the playoffs by Indianapolis. The five-time NFL MVP extended his QB record with his 14th Pro Bowl selection this season, tying center Bruce Matthews and tight end Tony Gonzalez for the most in NFL history.
Manning may be close to retirement after he played through injuries in the playoffs. General manager and Hall of Famer John Elway has told Manning to wait to make a decision and the hiring of Del Rio will certainly play a part in what the legendary quarterback decides to do.
Manning will receive the award at the Athletes In Action Super Bowl Breakfast in Phoenix on Jan. 30. Manning and his wife, Ashley, have helped at-risk youth in Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana and Tennessee through the PeyBack Foundation since 1999.
Manning was ambivalent about his future after the game but didn't say his health was at issue. He said he just needed time to process Denver's disappointing loss to his former team.
The last five games of the season were nothing special for Manning with five TDs, six INTs and an average of 233.8 yards per game.
Manning had not thrown more than two picks in any previous game this season, and likely let his fantasy owners down by not recording 20 fantasy points in any of the last four games.