The concern over Peyton Manning’s regression is mounting. The Denver Broncos star quarterback returned for yet another season despite a mild collapse down the stretch last season, but with numerous reports suggesting a thigh injury may have contributed to his slide, there was optimism Manning could get healthy and come back stronger for 2015.
The reports haven’t been glowing. Per NFL.com’s Albert Breer, NFL executives around the league saw a “limited” Manning this summer with “significantly diminished” arm strength.
That’s not what you want to hear about a 39-year old quarterback who already was gaining popularity as a thrower who tossed “accurate ducks”. Still, even though the concerns are fairly valid, Manning hasn’t relied on a cannon arm throughout his career, while talk of his immobility could date back for 10+ years. Manning’s cerebral level remains untouched, while he hasn’t dipped below a 66% completion percentage since 2007.
With a strong supporting cast still around him and Denver leaning more on the ground game than ever, Manning should be fine heading into the 2015 fantasy football season. That doesn’t mean he’ll be the top fantasy quarterback or even a lock for the top-three, but we all knew to be cautious when/where to draft him anyways. If you got Manning at a value, you shouldn’t be too concerned. He’s still going to put up close to 4,000 yards and 30 touchdowns, because the one thing he still does at an elite level is execute and get the ball where it needs to go.
The top end of his fantasy production has been lowered, but don’t let that scare you from using him in daily fantasy football leagues are riding confidently into 2015 with him as your main man in season long leagues. Even a less than elite Peyton Manning just might still be a borderline elite fantasy quarterback.