Former Indianapolis Colts legend Reggie Wayne, who currently coaches the team's wide receivers, believes the addition of veteran quarterback Matt Ryan is such a good thing for the franchise that it makes him sick, specifically because the former Atlanta Falcons QB reminds him of a certain Hall of Famer.
"It makes me throw up how much he reminds me of Peyton [Manning]," Wayne told reporters Wednesday.
Wayne and Manning were teammates in Indianapolis for several years, but it's hard to imagine comparing the Hall of Famer to Ryan, who has yet to win a Super Bowl and reach the kind of status Manning was able to achieve over his career.
Manning won two Super Bowls, was named a Pro Bowler 14 times, an All-Pro seven times and MVP five times over his legendary career. Ryan, meanwhile, is a four-time Pro Bowler, one-time All-Pro and one-time MVP award winner.
Regardless, Manning also sees something special in the former Falcons quarterback. He even helped Indianapolis recruit Ryan, Jim Irsay revealed last month. The Colts owner added that Manning's belief in Ryan "validates that the move was clearly the right one for us."
Colts offensive coordinator Marcus Brady also said last week that Ryan had spent a lot of time getting to know his new teammates, adding that he fits the franchise's offense "perfectly":
"Just as far as he wants to get the ball out quickly, he's in rhythm, he's an accurate quarterback. One thing that he brings differently, he's damn near a coach in himself. He's really been, like this week and last week, he's coaching up the receivers as well. Like, 'This is what I'm looking for. This is what I except. This is the body lean that I want you to have.' It's just kind of a breath of fresh air to hear that so the rest of the room is not just hearing it from the coaches, they're hearing it from their quarterback. Because it's really about them as far as getting on the same page and timing. Definitely was excited when we got Matt."
The Colts are hoping to get more than just one season out of Ryan, too, and they hope he can lead them to their first Super Bowl title since 2007, when Manning was named Super Bowl MVP.
If Ryan is unable to lead the franchise to glory over the next few seasons, the team will likely move on to its sixth different starting quarterback since the 2018 season.