Peyton Manning Says He Has 'Zero Interest' in Becoming a Politician

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 27, 2017

Host Peyton Manning speaks at the ESPYS at the Microsoft Theater on Wednesday, July 12, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
Chris Pizzello/Associated Press

Legendary former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning downplayed his prospects of going from the gridiron to elected office.

"I certainly have an interest in politics and in our country," he said Wednesday on 104.5 The Zone in Nashville, Tennessee (h/t 247Sports' Allan Bell Jr.). "I just have zero interest in being a politician."

The topic of Manning entering politics became relevant again after Tennessee Rep. Scott DesJarlais addressed the hypothetical. DesJarlais said Manning probably wouldn't want to replace the retiring Sen. Bob Corker but "may be looking more at" running for Sen. Lamar Alexander's seat should Alexander bow out ahead of the 2020 elections, per Business Insider's Joe Perticone.

Corker also told Politico's Burgess Everett that Manning could potentially run for office but that it's unlikely. Corker added he believes Manning would sour on the idea "if he got a huge rush of public inquiries."

In June, Manning was photographed returning to the White House with Corker, a Republican, after a round of golf with President Donald Trump at Trump National Golf Club in Potomac Falls, Virginia.

Former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning (2R) and Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) (R) walk with others after retiring to the White House with US President Donald Trump from the Trump National Golf Club June 4, 2017 in Washington, DC. / AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialows
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/Getty Images

"I heard Arnold Palmer say one time, 'If the President of the United States ever asks you to play golf, you do it,'" Manning said on Jimmy Kimmel Live a month later (h/t CBSSports.com's Sean Wagner-McGough). "It's a no-brainer. And it was a fantastic experience."

The Daily Beast's Kelly Weill wrote in January that Manning had donated to previous Republican politicians in the past. He supported George W. Bush's re-election campaign in 2004 and then Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign, as well as giving money to Corker's and Alexander's campaigns.

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