Not literally, because that would make Peyton Manning some kind of bionic freak, or perhaps a subject in experimental reverse aging procedures.
Brandon Stokley, Manning’s former teammate in Indianapolis, caught his passes two weeks ago when he was throwing cats at Duke, and he’s continued to be Manning’s rehab target when he’s found time for a workout during his free agency tour throughout all of America and parts of Mexico. Their most recent workout was this past Saturday morning in a Colorado public park
Stokley told Mike Klis of the Denver Post that during the Duke workouts Manning’s arm looked pretty good, and he seems to remember how to throw a football far and accurately. His arm looked so good, that on the other end of those throws Stokley was reminded of his days as a Colt, because it felt like he was catching passes from a vintage Manning.
“I saw him for three days at Duke and he was the only quarterback (throwing to four or five receivers) and he threw a ton of balls for three straight practices and the guy looked to me like he did when I was there six years ago.”
Six years ago Manning threw for 3,747 yards with 28 touchdowns, 10 interceptions, a completion percentage of 67.3, a passer rating of 104.1, and 8.3 yards per pass attempt, the second highest total of his career. If Manning’s eventual team is getting that Manning, then teams that either lost out or didn’t bother to place their bid are about to look very foolish.
Of course, we can’t put too much stock solely in the encouraging words of one former Manning target, even if he’s a recent target. We shouldn’t, although there will be plenty of Broncos, Dolphins, and Cardinals fans out there grasping at anything and everything to justify their belief that Manning will immediately catapult their team into Super Bowl contention.
But hey, who am I to question the word of a man who’s willing to put his reputation on the line. Stokley feels that strongly about his former quarterback’s condition, as he also told Klis that people who don’t believe in Manning are crazy, man.
“People who say the Broncos are crazy for not watching his balls fly, or what are they doing? those people are dead wrong. I’ll put whatever reputation I have on the line behind that guy right now. He looks great.”