The Indianapolis Colts will pay homage to one of the greatest quarterbacks in franchise history when Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos travel to Lucas Oil Stadium on Oct. 20, according to Mike Wells of ESPN.com.
Manning played in Indianapolis for 13 seasons before a neck injury sidelined him for an entire year. The Colts then fell to 2-14 and earned the first overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft. Manning turned 36 years old during the following offseason, and the Colts parted ways with him in favor of No. 1 overall pick Andrew Luck.
Colts owner Jim Irsay, who was by Manning's side on the day he said goodbye to the organization, told Jarrett Bell of USA Today the event of honoring the longtime Colts quarterback would be one to remember:
It'll be tremendous. They will cheer, as deserved. When he comes back on the field, I think there will be a boisterous standing ovation, as there should be. He means so much to our franchise.
It's going to be crazy, but mostly it'll be fun. I hope it's just a great game.
The game should indeed be great, with the Broncos currently sitting at 5-0 and likely heading into Indianapolis at 6-0 (sorry, Jaguars) to face a Luck-led Colts team that has knocked off both the San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks this season.
As a Colt, Manning led the team to two Super Bowls, winning one in 2006, and consecutive playoff appearances from 2002 to 2010.
Manning has passed for 1,884 yards and 20 touchdowns this season, more than any other player in football. As for his successor, Luck guided the Colts to the playoffs last season and has passed for 1,144 yards and seven touchdowns this season.
The tribute details have yet to be finalized, but if Irsay's words hold any water—which they usually do—next Sunday's tribute should be one to remember, and deservedly so.