Working out with Vols keeps Manning young

Peyton Manning on his first season

Peyton Manning doesn’t want to coach the Tennessee football players he is working out with this week.

Nope, Manning’s goal when he’s on Tennessee’s campus is to feel like the young Vol he once was.

“I really try to treat them . . . like we are teammates,” the Indianapolis Colts quarterback said this week. “I’ll certainly answer any questions. But I‘ll just get in the middle of them and work out.

“I certainly don’t come in and try to coach them. I just try to be a resource. I really get great joy out of it. I look forward to it every year.”

Manning will be working with UT’s skill players, including quarterbacks Matt Simms and Tyler Bray.

Simms came out of spring practice as the starter, but competition has resumed during summer workouts and will be ramped up during preseason camp in August.

“There will be competition,” Manning said. “I can certainly relate to that. Usually you feel like if someone can get the edge as a young player, they can kind of keep that job.”

Winning the starting job is just part of the process. Soon thereafter, whoever is named the starter best hope for some good fortune to set up their UT career.

“I do think a kid’s first experience needs to be somewhat positive,” Manning said.

Manning remembers his first positive moment. In his first start, against a stout Washington State defense, a blown call wiped off what should have been an interception on one of Manning’s first pass attempts of the game.

With a good break behind him, Manning’s confidence grew.

“We got that win in my first start,” he said. “That just did wonders for me.”

Goal Oriented: Manning had high hopes when he was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in 1998.

“When I got there, coming from here (in Knoxville) where football is so important, it was a change for me,” Manning said. “When you got up there, you realize that it was basketball first, car racing second. I guess football was third, somewhere in there.

“But now, if you ask anybody, I think they’d tell you that Indianapolis is a football town first. That’s hard to do. We feel like we have turned that place into a football town and a football state. That was always my goal.”

Now, Manning has another goal in mind.

“My goal when I first got drafted by the Colts was to play my whole career there,” he said. “I certainly hope that’s still the way it’s going to end up being.”

The Colts seem to feel the same way, suggesting publicly that a contract in the works will make Manning the highest-paid player in NFL history.

Former Vol Updates: Manning has spoken out publicly about other players, but not often.

“At all costs, you try to keep everything in house if you can,” Manning said. “That’s the best way to get it solved.”

That has not been the case with the Washington Redskins and former UT defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, who is reportedly demanding a trade because he doesn’t want to play nose guard in Washington’s new 3-4 defense. Some Redskins have spoken out publicly against Haynesworth.

Manning spoke highly when asked about former UT safety Eric Berry, who was selected with the fifth pick in the NFL draft by the Kansas City Chiefs, whom the Colts play this season.

“When he has a chance to hit me on a safety blitz, I hope he goes easy on me and remembers how nice I was to him,” Manning said. “It seems like all of (the former Vols in the NFL) haven’t always remembered that.”

Manning has seen former UT offensive lineman Jacques McClendon up close. The Colts selected McClendon in the fourth round of April’s draft.

“Finally got another Tennessee Volunteer in camp,” Manning said. “He’s doing a good job. He’s playing center and playing guard for us.”

Dooley Noted: Through various brief discussions, Manning said he believes first-year UT head coach Derek Dooley understands the significance of the Tennessee job.

That didn’t seem to be the case with Dooley’s predecessor, Southern California head coach Lane Kiffin, who faces severe NCAA sanctions for violations committed under former USC head coach Pete Carroll.

“I’m sure there weren’t many tears shed here in Knoxville and I can understand that,” Manning said.

Like Dooley, Manning can understand the SEC transition of traditions. Manning’s father, Archie Manning, was a legendary quarterback at Ole Miss. Dooley’s father, Vince Dooley, coached at Georgia for 25 seasons and won a national championship.

Manning said he actually saw Vince Dooley don a UT cap in support of his son.

“It took my dad about a year to put one on,” Manning joked.

No Pain in the Neck: Manning said he’s recovered from the neck surgery he had in March.

Despite being in his 13th NFL season, Manning, 34, said he still feels young.

“I do feel good. I think every year, as any player gets older, it becomes a little more of challenge,” he said. “You have to work even harder to stay in good shape and keep yourself healthy.”

Home Front: Manning, who is from Louisiana, said he has kept track of the oil spill that threatens to mar the coastline surrounding the Gulf of Mexico.

“It’s certainly been disappointing. Just as the city was beginning to recover from (Hurricane) Katrina, this happens,” Manning said, referring to New Orleans. “It’s just another test of wills.

Manning said he and his brother, New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning, are evaluating ways they can help in the oil spill recovery.

“This is a problem that, unfortunately, is going to be around for some time,” he said.

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Comments » 41

tnsportsman writes:

Peyton Manning Day on GVX which is awesome! Peyton is the class act of all of the University of Tennessee!

GO VOLS, WE ARE UT!

Georgia_Dave writes:

First. What a great spokesperson for UT, a first rate classy guy that we can be proud to say HE'S A VOL. GBO

kfa1979#319418 writes:

Manning is and will always be a class act. It's so great for the University of Tennessee to have such an amazing alum who still gives his all for the program!

UTByrd writes:

It's great to have Peyton as a UT alum.
He may not be coaching but I'll bet he's had to answer many questions, especially from Tyler Bray.
Go VOLS!!!!!

rockytopatl writes:

That would be a great thing to mention to QB recruits: Come to Tennessee and train each summer with the greatest signalcaller of them all. Sign 'em up!

Receivers, come run some routes for Peyton. He can show you a thing or two as well.

V_O_L_S_GO_VOLS_GO writes:

Damn, I love that Peyton.

69vol08 writes:

Class act regardless of success or not! So proud to be a fellow UT alumni with Peyton! You never hear Peyton utter a negative word about anyone!

orangecountyvols writes:

All compliments for Peyton are well deserved. What a nice person, classy, and a great athlete as we know.

AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons writes:

What a great piece Hooker, hey trolls this is why Vol fans regard PM as the ultimate Vol. Yeah, yeah, we know bammer beat him his freshman year and he never beat UF ags, but let me axe you this:

What of your former alums is this involved with YOUR U's?????

kfa1979#319418 writes:

in response to AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons:

What a great piece Hooker, hey trolls this is why Vol fans regard PM as the ultimate Vol. Yeah, yeah, we know bammer beat him his freshman year and he never beat UF ags, but let me axe you this:

What of your former alums is this involved with YOUR U's?????

Great post and good point! Not sure there is anyone out there that could represent their university like Peyton does for us....and I'm sure he will hoist the Lombardi again.

GreerVol22 writes:

just goes to show you that you don't have to have your pants on the ground, gold teeth, or your hat turned sideways to be a model citizen...

AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons writes:

Frankie Hammond of UF recently had a DUI.

DUI = Driving Urban Insane

Keep it going g-turds.

AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons writes:

in response to AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons:

What a great piece Hooker, hey trolls this is why Vol fans regard PM as the ultimate Vol. Yeah, yeah, we know bammer beat him his freshman year and he never beat UF ags, but let me axe you this:

What of your former alums is this involved with YOUR U's?????

And bammers don't even say Namath, because everytime he EVEN THINKS about that redneck 3rd poorest state in the US he has to get drunk just to deal with having played there!

"Hey, I wanna kiss you"

ncvol17 writes:

Peyton is a great Ambassador for Indy, Louisiana, and of course UT. How cool is it that he helps ALL our QB's each year..What a guy

Bigger_Al writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Ayershall writes:

in response to Bigger_Al:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Bigger_Al lobs one up.... and the Gators are silent.

keepitreal4vols writes:

Dave Hooker does 1 interview and then writes 5 stories from it.

Need_2_Know writes:

Peyton comes from good stock, both Archie and Olivia are very warm, intelligent and sharing people, and they have done an exceptional job of parenting to raise three boys as well as they did. As much as Peyton is a template for a great athlete and alumnus, his parents are templates for how to raise kids right. I'm so glad that the Mannings chose to associate their family with our university. The General, The Voice, The Family. What a trifecta!!!!!!

Bigger_Al writes:

in response to Ayershall:

Bigger_Al lobs one up.... and the Gators are silent.

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

nicknack1 writes:

I know he said he didn't want to come in and coach, but I think it would be awesome that when Peyton retires, he can come to UT as a QB coach or recruiter

DaddyVol writes:

in response to AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons:

And bammers don't even say Namath, because everytime he EVEN THINKS about that redneck 3rd poorest state in the US he has to get drunk just to deal with having played there!

"Hey, I wanna kiss you"

Here's a typical photo for Alabama fans...

http://www.creedscove.com/sites/al/im...

crice#253038 writes:

Hey Peyton when you are finished on the "Hill" please
go see Sir Albert and remind him what class, teamwork and dignity are all about. If he listened to local sports talk radio,(Nashville) he will find out that he is only a hero in his own mind. He is getting lit up like a Christmas tree. It is an embarassment to the Vol Nation!!! Peyton, Thanks for being "All Vol", all the time. Will see you, first ballot in Canton someday and then come home To TN!!! love you "16"/forever "16

HoraceMorris writes:

in response to keepitreal4vols:

Dave Hooker does 1 interview and then writes 5 stories from it.

Steve Phillips at wbir does the same thing. He and Hooker must have gone to the same journalism school or they're both just lazy.

It must be strange for Peyton to come back to UT with Fulmer being gone. I know when I went back to my high school and didn't see a teacher I knew, it was a strange feeling. Glad he still comes back once a year.

pj_ladyvolnMI writes:

Agree, we couldn't have a greater ambassador for the Vols. Peyton is humble and gracious enough to use all he's been blessed with (athletic gifts and money) to give back and bless others...not just wear it around like a trophy. Class act. I love living in Indy and claiming two cities who benefit from his generosity.

KiwiLuvsUT writes:

Peyton,
PM#16 forever!
When you decide to stop playin in the NFL please come back.
Peyton, teach Tyler as much as possible!
Love YA!
GBO!
If Tyler is half as good as Peyton then... Well U Can Only Imagine How GREAT UTS Offense Would Be!!!!!!

IndyVolFan writes:

in response to pj_ladyvolnMI:

Agree, we couldn't have a greater ambassador for the Vols. Peyton is humble and gracious enough to use all he's been blessed with (athletic gifts and money) to give back and bless others...not just wear it around like a trophy. Class act. I love living in Indy and claiming two cities who benefit from his generosity.

Amen, PJ. Agree 100%.

1BADVOL writes:

in response to AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons:

What a great piece Hooker, hey trolls this is why Vol fans regard PM as the ultimate Vol. Yeah, yeah, we know bammer beat him his freshman year and he never beat UF ags, but let me axe you this:

What of your former alums is this involved with YOUR U's?????

Peyton vs Danny W. I wonder if Danny boy would trade his wins vs UT and his Heisman Trophy for hmmm... a Super Bowl Trophy, Super Bowl MVP, League MVP, a couple of hundred million, SNL appearance and about 20 commercial and endorsement contracts. One can only imagine. Not to mention Peyton's passion, sacrifice and money given to his alma mater. Peyton you make us proud to be part of the VOL Nation.

Ringside writes:

Peyton is a good guy to have on your side.
I still laugh when I see his SNL bit.

Colliervol writes:

in response to crice#253038:

Hey Peyton when you are finished on the "Hill" please
go see Sir Albert and remind him what class, teamwork and dignity are all about. If he listened to local sports talk radio,(Nashville) he will find out that he is only a hero in his own mind. He is getting lit up like a Christmas tree. It is an embarassment to the Vol Nation!!! Peyton, Thanks for being "All Vol", all the time. Will see you, first ballot in Canton someday and then come home To TN!!! love you "16"/forever "16

Nobody ever said that most of these athletes are rocket scientists. Least of all "Sir Albert".

volsgirl writes:

I hope some day Peyton will return to UT for coaching job here .
From Chattanooga with love......GO VOLS

UKandUF writes:

Peyton will NEVER put on an orange & white uniform with a T on the helmet, walk out on the football field and beat my alma mater, my Florida Gators!!!

UKandUF writes:

Wuerffel and Peyton, one won a National Championship, one won (4) SEC Championships, one won a Heisman Trophy, the other won zero, zilch, and zippo... Can you guess which is which!!!

AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons writes:

in response to UKandUF:

Wuerffel and Peyton, one won a National Championship, one won (4) SEC Championships, one won a Heisman Trophy, the other won zero, zilch, and zippo... Can you guess which is which!!!

Won the SEC in 1997. That's more than zero, zilch, zippo AND NADA.

Wow you're bright.

And exactly what former UF ag QB is still playing and in the news..........

.

.

.

(crickets chirping)

.
.
.

UKandUF writes:

in response to AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons:

Won the SEC in 1997. That's more than zero, zilch, zippo AND NADA.

Wow you're bright.

And exactly what former UF ag QB is still playing and in the news..........

.

.

.

(crickets chirping)

.
.
.

That was after Wuerffel graduated and you can thank LSU & Georgia, not Peyton as he could not even beat Doug Johnson!!! How pathetic...

Peyton never beat the Gators, never won a National Championship, never won a Heisman, and NEVER will... What have you to say about that.

I can hear the crickets chirping eternally!!!

UKandUF writes:

in response to AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons:

Won the SEC in 1997. That's more than zero, zilch, zippo AND NADA.

Wow you're bright.

And exactly what former UF ag QB is still playing and in the news..........

.

.

.

(crickets chirping)

.
.
.

A former Florida Gator QB in the NFL and in the news would be 2-time National Champion, 2-time SEC Champion, and Heisman Award winner, TIM TEBOW!!!

rdp0013vols writes:

Peyton when you are done with your career at Indianapolis please come back and put back on the organge and white and lead our team. You are what all volunteer fans love and the perfect role model for all kids. God has blessed u and you have helped so many just by your actions on and off the field. I have watched you since your first start at UT till the colts. I dreamed of you coming back to UT and leading our team out of the tunnel through the T. No disrespect to Dooley he seems like a good man better than Kiffin could ever dream of. I think he will do a good job but whenever you decide to hang up the cleats come back and consider coaching our team.. You are what being a volunteer is all about in the football world and in reality.. Thank you sir

RespectTradition writes:

in response to UKandUF:

A former Florida Gator QB in the NFL and in the news would be 2-time National Champion, 2-time SEC Champion, and Heisman Award winner, TIM TEBOW!!!

No one has ever 'won' a Heisman. The Heisman, like all such things, is 'awarded', not 'won' and it is inaccurate and imprecise to state otherwise, no matter what media outlets may do the same.

Games are won by players, on the field, with objective criteria, not voted on subjectively like awards.

Go Vols!

RespectTradition writes:

in response to UKandUF:

That was after Wuerffel graduated and you can thank LSU & Georgia, not Peyton as he could not even beat Doug Johnson!!! How pathetic...

Peyton never beat the Gators, never won a National Championship, never won a Heisman, and NEVER will... What have you to say about that.

I can hear the crickets chirping eternally!!!

And another thing. No player has ever beaten another team. Teams win or lose as a group, not individuals. It would be fair to say that none of the teams Mr. Manning was on beat a Florida team. It is unfair to say that Mr. Manning never beat Florida.

Is Reggie Bush a better RB because he won a SB and Barry Sanders didn't? Of course not, Bush played on a better team, that's all.

Go Vols!

DenverVol writes:

One word - Class

That's all it takes to describe PM

Kantgard writes:

in response to volsgirl:

I hope some day Peyton will return to UT for coaching job here .
From Chattanooga with love......GO VOLS

My thoughts exactly. Peyton would be a great coach. In addition, it seems he would do well recruiting. What QB wouldn't want to come and play for him?

givehim6 writes:

in response to UTByrd:

It's great to have Peyton as a UT alum.
He may not be coaching but I'll bet he's had to answer many questions, especially from Tyler Bray.
Go VOLS!!!!!

I bet getting to work out with Manning was a treat, especially for Bray. I think Manning was a big reason Bray came to UT.

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