After a Pro Football Hall of Fame career, what else could Peyton Manning possibly add to his resume amid his many broadcast ventures? An NFL coaching job, perhaps?
If the 46-year-old were to consider that, he’d have two prerequisites.
“All of these opportunities now from ‘Peyton’s Places’ to the ‘Manningcast’ have been appealing because I get to pick my schedule a bit. I think whatever comes next just needs to be [the] right fit at the right time,” Manning told The Post on behalf of Frito-Lay and their new World Cup commercial that stars him and David Beckham.
The timing was right for Manning’s good friend and former Colts teammate Jeff Saturday, who accepted the job as interim head coach of the team earlier this month, leaving behind his job as a television analyst with ESPN.
“I’m proud of Jeff and the team,” Manning said when asked about the criticism both parties faced due to Saturday having no prior coaching experience beyond the high school level. “Everyone really came together and stepped up after a tough loss [in the firing of Frank Reich], and he’s got the team looking good.
“I was a little surprised when I saw the news… no insider information here, but obviously [Colts owner] Jim [Irsay] and Jeff had been in conversations throughout the year. I’m really happy for him.”
Manning and Saturday were a dynamic quarterback-center threat for 12 years with Indianapolis, winning a Super Bowl together in 2007.
Manning said recently that he doesn’t believe he is “qualified” to run for commissioner of the NFL. The former Broncos quarterback also was not part of the new ownership group that acquired the team earlier this year.
However, the Walton/Penner group did reportedly reach out to Manning over the summer about an advisory role with the team that could lead to his joining the ownership group.
So, why not turn to coaching? In September, Manning explained on Colin Cowherd’s podcast that he was still learning the ropes as the offensive coordinator of his son Marshall’s sixth grade football team. He also coaches at the Manning Passing Academy each summer in Louisiana.
Although Manning has yet to reveal his next career move, he has remained close to the game of football through his various ESPN broadcasts and Omaha Productions company.
The two-time Super Bowl champion has found success in hosting the “Manningcast,” alongside his brother Eli Manning, on “Monday Night Football,” as well as “Peyton’s Places,” a football-themed documentary series on ESPN+.
“He’s been fun to work with on this Monday night show,” Manning said of Eli. “We laugh a lot. We give each other a hard time, but it’s all in a fun nature. Eli works hard, and it’s always fun to talk football with him. I’ve really enjoyed getting to do that with him.”
Manning also hosted the CMAs alongside country music star Luke Bryan earlier this month. Additionally, he appeared on “Saturday Night Live” in January, and hosted NBC’s College Bowl in September, alongside his brother Cooper Manning.