DENVER — Nobody knows what Peyton Manning is going through this week like his family.
His father Archie Manning, brother Cooper and even brother Eli were on hand for the Broncos win on Sunday. Now, as he prepares for the Super Bowl, they’re sharing their thoughts on his football legacy and the special bond they share.
Make no mistake, this Super Bowl is special for the entire Manning family.
“I don’t think I’m any different than any other parent of the Bronco players,” Archie Manning said following the Broncos victory on Sunday. “It’s an exciting time for our children to get to go play in the Super Bowl.”
For Peyton the excitement for this Super Bowl comes with a lot of speculation about his legacy. Despite all the added attention and scrutiny, older brother Cooper Manning says nothing will change Peyton’s enthusiasm and focus for the task at hand.
“He still has a young kid in the front yard attitude about football and I think, people that love it, that’s the way they are,” Cooper said. “That’s how Peyton is.”
From the time they played together in the yard as kids, the Manning boys have shared a bond on and off the field. Peyton and Cooper played together in high school in Louisiana, and he’s shared the same profession with his brother Eli for the past ten years in the NFL.
”I’m rooting for him. It’s not like watching any other football game,” Eli said during a conference call with reporters on Thursday. “I get nervous watching my brother play, and I guess because I’ve been doing this for a long time and you kind of know key moments and key plays.”
Following Broncos practice on Thursday, Peyton also talked about that bond between brothers.
“I think Eli pulls for me and I pull for him,” Peyton said. “It has been neat having the relationship with him, both having the same job for these past 10-something years. We have a lot that we can relate to and a lot of situations that we`ve both faced.’
Some of those situations involve off the field distractions, like finding Super Bowl tickets for the family. Eli said he will take care of those ticket duties this year. Peyton says he’s done the same.
“That is certainly a way that I think I`ve been helpful to him and he`s been helpful to me the past two (Super Bowls) that I`ve played in,” Peyton said. “He`s helped me out again this year. You certainly appreciate that.’
Eli says he believes Peyton has already established his legacy and that he doesn’t think his brother is concerned about it right now. If he is, another Manning has some advice.
“One of my favorite things to tell him is enjoy the journey,” Archie Manning said. “I tell him that all the time, enjoy the journey and it’s been a good journey.”