With two Super Bowl rings and numerous personal accolades to his name, Peyton Manning is considered one of the greatest quarterbacks in history. Where did Manning grow up?
Peyton Manning was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he also attended the Isidore Newman high school. He played college football for the University of Tennessee Volunteers before playing pro football for the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos.
For more on Peyton Manning’s early life and his journey to the NFL, read on.
Peyton Williams Manning was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on March 24, 1976. His father was Elisha Archibald “Archie” Manning III, born in Mississippi, who played 13 seasons as an NFL quarterback, primarily with the New Orleans Saints.
Archie met his future wife, Olivia Williams, also from Mississippi, while both were students at Ole Miss. Olivia was Homecoming Queen in her senior year.
After marrying, the couple relocated to New Orleans, where they had three sons. The first of their sons was Cooper, who was a promising football prospect in high school.
When Cooper was 18, he was diagnosed with spinal stenosis, which forced him to stop competing in sports. He went on to work at an energy investment firm and had a son, Arch, who became a top high school quarterback.
Peyton was the middle son of the three, born in 1976, followed by the youngest brother, Elisha Nelson Manning IV. Elisha is better known as Eli and followed his father and brother’s footsteps in becoming an NFL quarterback.
Eli is a two time NFL Super Bowl champion, famously defeating the then 18-0 New England Patriots at Super Bowl XLII in 2008. Eli’s pass to David Tyree, known as the “Helmet Catch” became one of the most famous plays in Super Bowl history.
Surrounded by football from an early age, Manning attended high school at the Isidore Newman School in New Orleans. He established himself as an exceptional player during his three seasons as the school’s starting quarterback, leading the Greenies to a 34-5 record.
Manning began wearing his now-iconic number 18 jersey while playing at Newman, a way of honoring Cooper’s unrealized football aspirations. Newman would later retire the number and it continues to hang in the school’s gym to honor Peyton Manning’s legendary football career.
He received numerous accolades for his achievements on the high school field, named the Gatorade Circle of Champions National Player of the Year. As a result, he was considered one of the standout prospects in the United States.
Manning was approached by approximately 60 colleges, including Ole Miss, his father’s amla mater. Among the other top schools that wanted to recruit him were Texas, Texas A&M, Michigan, LSU, Florida and Florida State.
Ultimately, he chose to play at the University of Tennessee as part of the Volunteers. His parents received angry letters and phonecalls from some Ole Miss fans, who believed that Manning would follow in his father’s footsteps by playing for the Rebels.
Manning won 39 of his 45 games as the Volunteers starting quarterback, breaking the SEC’s career wins record. He also became the college’s all time passing leader.
Despite completing his degree in three years and being projected as the top pick in the 1997 NFL Draft, Manning returned to the college to play his senior year. Despite winning numerous awards in his final year in college, Manning finished as runner up in the 1997 Heisman Trophy, with Charles Woodson chosen as the winner.
Manning’s college number, 16, was retired by the University of Tennessee, and he is considered one of the college’s all time greatest players. As anticipated, he was selected by the Indianapolis Colts as the first overall pick in the 1998 NFL Draft.
Despite exceptional regular season performances, Manning was often criticised for his postseason record. In spite of this, he won two Super Bowls, the first of which was XLI with the Colts against the Chicago Bears.
After missing the entire 2011 season due to a severe neck injury, Manning was released by the Colts. He was signed by the Denver Broncos, with whom he played four seasons and won Super Bowl 50, overcoming the Carolina Panthers.
Regardless of postseason criticism, Manning is considered one of the greatest quarterbacks in history. He was named NFL MVP five times, as well as being chosen for the Pro Bowl 14 times in his 17 seasons as an active player.