The Patriots played a big part in Peyton Manning’s career, as the former Broncos and Colts quarterback faced New England 24 times during his 18 years in the NFL.
So perhaps it’s fitting that Manning mentioned multiple Patriots in his retirement speech on Monday at Broncos headquarters in Englewood, Colo.
“I’m going to miss … my battles with Lynch, Lewis, Derrick, Thomas, Bruschi, Fletcher, Dawkins, Seau, Urlacher, Polamalu, Harrison, Woodson, and Reed,’’ Manning told reporters. “And with coaches like Fisher, Ryan, Belichick, Kiffin, Phillips, Rivera, LeBeau, Crennel, Capers, Lewis, the late Jim Johnson, and so many more.’’
He added: “I always felt like I was kinda playing against that middle linebacker, or that safety, or that defensive coach.’’
Manning mentioned current Patriots quarterback Tom Brady separately.
“I’ll miss that handshake with Tom Brady,’’ he said, referring to his postgame, midfield meetings with the Patriots quarterback.
Manning even gave a shoutout to Patriots fans.
“I’ll even miss the Patriots fans in Foxboro,’’ Manning said. “And they should miss me, because they sure did get a lot of wins off of me.’’
Every matchup between Tom Brady and Peyton Manning