NFL News: Signs Point Toward Peyton Manning Missing the 2011 Season

John SzurlejAnalyst ISeptember 8, 2011

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - JANUARY 08:  Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 of the Indianapolis Colts looks on during warm ups against the New York Jets during their 2011 AFC wild card playoff game at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 8, 2011 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Given the current situation in Indianapolis, the news is hopefully something that no Colts fan wants to hear is true: Peyton Manning may not play at all in 2011.

One thing remains consistent throughout this entire saga: Peyton Manning and the Colts have been guarding the truth very well.

Colts owner Jim Irsay had refute a report from WNDE Radio's Jake Query that said Manning was done for the year following a second surgery, but he also said more information was coming later.

Manning has had two surgeries over the past two years. There have been concerns over his response to these procedures and how he has recovered and rehabilitated from the surgical procedures.

Heading into the preseason, the Colts had concerns regarding Peyton's recovery taking longer than expected.

With the season looming around the corner and Colts backup quarterback Curtis Painter under performing, the Colts scrambled to find a stop gap veteran that could come to Indy and start the season.

Enter Kerry Collins.

It kind of makes you wonder if Irsay's tweet about being in Hattiesburg, Mississippi (h/t ESPN) was a joke or if he did intend on jumping on the Favre rumor mill, but regardless the Colts decided on Collins.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - MARCH 21:  Indianapolis Colts NFL team owner Jim Irsay address the media at the Roosevelt Hotelon March 21, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Despite a NFL owners imposed lockout in effect since March 12, the league is conducting it's annu
Sean Gardner/Getty Images

Peyton's neck surgery is a complex issue.  When you start dealing with neck injuries you involve nerves and the spinal cord and it isn't something that can be hurried along as it poses a great risk to the patient.

Peyton's nerve regeneration surgery was performed in May of this year.

ESPN Radio host John Michael Vincent has stated that according to very reliable sources within the organization, Peyton Manning is out indefinitely and needs a second neck procedure. Then there is the cryptic tweet of the Colts owner where he stated, "Excuse me sir, I think this will be our finest hour." This is the follow-up to the famous NASA statement, "Houston, we have a problem."

One thing is for certain in this issue: The behavioral patterns of the Colts front office is certainly giving credibility to the reports and speculation that Peyton is done for the year, and one has to consider that this is a strong possibility.

This isn't like 2008 when Manning missed the entire preseason due to a surgery on an infected bursa sac in his knee.  This is considerably more serious.

Manning had limited work during a practice last week and then complained of back pain.  When Colts doctors re-evaluated Manning, they had him stop all activity and performed more testing on his neck.

CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 1: Kerry Collins #5 of the Indianapolis Colts throws a pass in the first half of an NFL preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on September 1, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Im
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

At this point the Colts are still uncertain as to how long Manning will be out an aren't speculating. 

The Colts also refuse to set a timetable for the Manning's return, which should be possible to do if the medical staff and doctors don't think there is a major problem.

That hasn't happened either, which adds to the speculations of Manning's season being lost.

If Peyton Manning is able to play this season, I would be surprised. 

There are more important things for Peyton Manning to consider than just playing a game, and I'm certain that those thoughts will outweigh the desire to rush back out onto the field.

All signs point to Manning missing the 2011 season.

Houston...we have a problem.


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