David Cutcliffe knows Peyton Manning probably better than anyone. He was his offensive coordinator during Peyton's college years at Tennessee and trains with him annually during the offseason. So when Manning and a select few teammates headed down to Duke for their annual workouts, Cutcliffe wasn't surprised by what he saw from Peyton.
David Cutcliffe says Peyton looks as good as ever http://t.co/4MCMeZB0Xa— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) June 8, 2015
Cutcliffe says that the 39-year-old quarterback still has that focus, intensity, and desire in him that has made him great for so many years.
"I'm amazed at times," said Cutcliffe, Duke's coach and a former Tennessee offensive coordinator. "We're doing this in an indoor facility with nobody watching and I watch his focus, his intensity, the absolute desire for every rep to be as good as it can be — that hunger is pretty amazing at this stage. But that's what successful people do."
As we all know, Manning suffered a strained quad which really limited him in the final weeks/months of the 2014 season. Manning turned 39 years old this offseason and spent some time this offseason contemplating retirement. He did decide to return for the 2015 season, and Cutcliffe says he looked healthy and strong.
"I thought he looked really healthy. We had talked about nutrition, about sleep, about recovery. He's really so, so smart. So brilliant and so disciplined. But there's another level, always. I thought he looked really fit. I thought his core was great. I watched him train inside, and he looks good and he's strong where he needs to be strong, and he didn't show anything at all from the quad. And we talked a lot about flexibility."
Manning has spent this entire offseason working on his conditioning trying to extend his career. Back in February he worked with renowned physical trainer Mackie Shilstone who is known for extending careers of older players. So it shouldn't be no surprise to hear that Manning is in great shape.
This is something I believe that Manning had to do this offseason. He is now 39 years old and coming off a season where he was injured, and in my opinion looked old. So getting into the best shape possible for what possibly could be his final season should be a priority. Add in the emphasis on the run game, and Manning being in great shape should help him stay fresh in November and December.