Peyton Manning On Injury: 'I'm Feeling Closer And Closer'

For Indianapolis Colts fans, Wednesday's press conference announcing the release of Peyton Manning was a sad day, the end of an era. But for the fan bases of many other teams, it was a day to celebrate. Manning is en route to free agency.

Manning, who missed the entire 2011 season due to a neck injury, said he's been making progress on his bid to return to the field in 2012.

I've still got some work to do, some progress to make. But I've come a long way and I've really worked hard. I can't tell you the hours and time I've put into working hard. I really enjoy being back out there.

Manning said he's been throwing to some of his old teammates, including Reggie Wayne. He says the 2011 season was difficult but things are getting easier now that he can actually throw the ball and get on the field.

I'm feeling closer and closer. I have to remind myself that it is March. I have a hard time of doing that at times. It sure does feel comfortable, feels like home being back out there. For not being out on the field in September, October and November, that was personally difficult so it's nice to have that freedom. I'm working hard and still have some work to do and I look forward to doing that work.

There wasn't much hesitation when Manning was asked if he'll be back. He said he was confident he'll be able to play but hasn't thought much about his next team.

Check out this piece from SB Nation's medical expert on the real issue with Manning's rehab.

For more news and reaction to the Colts releasing Manning, check out SB Nation's Colts blog, Stampede Blue. And for more updates, stay tuned to this StoryStream.

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