A video showing Peyton Manning working out at Duke surfaced late Friday night -- the first such video of him in action since he was "medically cleared" to play. Manning has been working out with his college offensive coordinator, David Cutcliffe, at Duke in an effort to regain his arm strength and rediscover his form while recovering from multiple neck injuries.
The video shows four different throws by Manning, who is in shoulder pads and a helmet. It was edited down to just show those four throws, all shot from different angles and places on the field. The video also appears to be shot on some kind of low-fi camera equipment, resulting in poor quality.
H/T Chris Mortensen
There's quite a few questions that stem from this short, hard to see video. Why is this video leaking now? Is this video indicative of his true ability right now? Does any of this change the Colts' plan to release Manning?
It's just four throws, shown on grainy, edited video. There's a post, two outs and what appears to be a drag. The post is the longest of the throws and the rest are all routes to the short side of the field. Simple, basic throws, sure, but they do serve as visual evidence of Manning's continued recovery.
With the Colts' deadline to release Manning without having to pay his hefty bonus approaching, the timing of this is curious. Nobody had seen Manning throw recently, and his physical ability has been in question as the free agency nears. If nothing else, the video may help sway public opinion in his favor.
There's very little chance Manning, his handlers and those on the field didn't know this was being shot. The person shooting the video is standing on the field in plain view. If Manning wanted to keep his workout a secret, without the prying eyes of cameras, he'd be able to -- and certainly a video shot from field-level wouldn't surface.
In addition to the video, Mortensen is also reporting Manning has been throwing better. So now we have visual evidence to go with the steady trickle of leaks indicating Manning is regaining his form once again.
This has to be calculated, with Manning either angling to stay with Indianapolis, thus keeping the massive bonus he's due, or marketing himself on the open market. Fans from other teams will clamor for him and Colts fans will hope the team decides to keep him.
Either way, though, Manning wins, simply by having this video floating around.