Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning suffered the most embarrassing loss of his career after seeing his team pummelled by the Seattle Seahawks 43-8 at Super Bowl XLVIII on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
The 37-year old Manning could close out the curtain of his legendary football career, which saw him winning NFL MVP award five times and the title as the best signal-caller in the modern era.
However, when the stake set at the highest level, Manning didn't show up his real game, and his mistakes were just enough for the opportunistic and swarming Eagles defence to capitalize.
"We knew they were fast, it was still a matter of us doing our jobs better and we didn't do that tonight," Manning said via USA Today.
"We weren't able to. I thought I heard him, and I snapped the ball," Ramirez said. "I was shocked. You never expect anything like that to happen. Of course I'll take full blame for that."
Manning, who covered 280 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions, did not mince any word in expressing his frustration following perhaps the worst defeat he ever suffered throughout his career.
"Certainly to finish this way is very disappointing," Manning told reporters during the post-game press conference via USA Today. "It is not an easy pill to swallow, but eventually, you have to."
Meanwhile, Broncos cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromarie was quick to point the Seattle's rough defence along with an array of miscues committed by several members of the team throughout the match are the ones that killed their Super Bowl hopes.
"They came out right from the jump and punched us around. Anytime you have a team out there that punches you around, you have to punch back," Rodgers-Cromartie told USA TODAY Sports. "It seemed like the harder we fought, the quicker we failed. It was like we were in quicksand out there."
Retirement Coming For Manning
Days building up to Super Bowl XLVIII, Manning already downplayed reports that he's going to retire after this season, stressing the he still enjoys the game and the rigid preparation that comes with it.
"When you still enjoy the preparation and the work part of it, I think you ought to be still doing that. I think as soon as I stop enjoying it, if I can't produce, if I can't help a team, that's when I will stop playing. If that's next year, then maybe it is. I certainly want to continue to keep playing," Manning said via Larry Brown Sports.
His father, Archie Manning, also believed his son is not going to quick football anytime soon, especially after leading the Broncos back to the Super Bowl.
"No, I don't think he'll be retiring after this Super Bowl," Archie Manning said via USA Today. "Peyton is having too much fun. The good Lord blessed him. And wherever his arm strength, whether it's 80, or 85 or 90%, he's good enough to play the way he is. And we're all grateful."
But Sunday's heavy beating at the hands of the Seahawks might convince Manning father time has arrived. In the wake of perhaps Manning's lowest point of his football days, the buzz about Manning' immediate retirement has gained tremendous steam on several social networking sites.
There's no doubt Manning is very much devastated right now. However, when it comes to the question on whether or not it's time for him to step away from the game, only Peyton knows the plan.
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