Just over a week removed from Peyton Manning’s retirement after an 18-year NFL career, the Indianapolis Colts are honoring their former quarterback. Owner Jim Irsay has announced a statue of Manning will be built at Lucas Oil Stadium and the team is retiring Manning’s number 18 jersey.
Irsay choked up while reading the declaration of the jersey retirement. He said it was hard to put into words what Manning has meant to him and the team.
"The journey we went on with Peyton under center for the Colts was just incredibly special in every way, shape or form on the field (and) off the field," said Irsay. "I just can’t say enough for what he has meant to this franchise, to this city and state."
Before reminiscing about his favorite memories in Indianapolis, Manning was seemingly speechless at Irsay’s announcement. "It was my honor and privilege to play for this organization for 14 years. This was the team that I wanted to play for. I was glad that you all drafted me and I’ll always be a Colt. I can’t tell you how special this news is to me."
When asked what he would do next, Manning said outside of previously-made commitments through the spring and summer, he didn’t know what he was going to do. He said he’d like to attend a New York Giants game to see his brother play and visit his alma mater to catch a University of Tennessee game.
Irsay called the announcement very special, especially considering former coach Tony Dungy will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this summer.
Manning seemingly had a hard time putting his reaction into words.
Irsay read a declaration to announce the retirement of Manning’s jersey.