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Peyton Manning’s future beyond 2014 will depend on an offseason exam

Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos stands on the sidelines during their victory over the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum on December 29, 2013 in Oakland, California.
Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos stands on the sidelines during their victory over the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum on December 29, 2013 in Oakland, California.
(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Peyton Manning is only focused on one game as the Denver Broncos are set to host the San Diego Chargers in the AFC Divisional Game. But his focus may have more weight, as his future in the NFL beyond 2014 is in question. As ABC News reports on Jan. 12, Manning’s future beyond this season will depend on the results of an offseason exam on his surgically repaired neck.

Manning’s performance in 2013, a season that has seen him break NFL single-season records in both passing yards and touchdowns, certainly looks like he can play on a high level for a more season. He is certainly planning on it, but if there is an increased risk of injury of that same neck that caused him to miss the entire 2011 season, then Manning will have to mull the possibility of retirement.

It will not depend on the outcome off the Broncos playoff run this year, but at 37, Manning knows his time is running out even though he has signed a five-year, $96 million deal with Denver.

So as his future is in question, the focus runs deeper for Manning. He hinted at a possible end of his playing career earlier in the week leading up to Sunday’s game against the San Diego Chargers.

“The light is at the end of the tunnel for me, no question.”

The four-time league MVP has already accomplished much in his NFL career but still he faced ridicule for disappointing playoff losses that weren’t completely his fault. But being the caliber of a player like Peyton Manning, he is willing to take the load on his shoulders when they win and when they lose.

If this is to be Manning’s final chance at redemption in the playoffs, he is striving to come out on top and if he is forced to decide, leave the game on a high.