INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -Colts coach Tony Dungy has spent weeks answering questions about Peyton Manning's left knee.
After Thursday night's preseason finale, he gave his most definitive answer yet when he said the two-time league MVP should play in the Colts' regular-season opener against Chicago on Sept. 7.
``I would be shocked if he's not there (a week from) Sunday,'' Dungy said. ``He would have to have a dramatic setback. Right now, every step we've taken has been good.''
Manning has made significant progress in the past week, six weeks after having surgery to remove an infected bursa sac from the knee.
He was activated from the physically unable to perform list Tuesday and then did some light work at practice. When he returned Wednesday, with no soreness in the knee, coaches increased his workload.
On Thursday night, he was in uniform and warming up for the first time at any of the Colts' five preseason games this year. And now, it appears, he'll be ready to go when the Colts play their first regular-season game at the new Lucas Oil Stadium.
``He wanted to see how loose he'd be after the wait in the locker room, that type of thing,'' Dungy said, explaining why Manning went through the pregame routine. ``We had an exercise bike out there for him, but I think he's pretty happy with how the routine went.''
Manning's status has been scrutinized for weeks.
He didn't report to training camp July 24, with the rest of his teammates, following doctors orders to stay home. Five days later, he finally arrived in Terre Haute, Ind., but was kept out of public view until Aug. 19 when he showed up for the team's first practice at the new stadium.
Along the way, many wondered whether Manning was hurt worse than first feared, and there were lingering questions about whether his streak of 160 consecutive regular-season starts - the second-longest by a quarterback - might be in jeopardy.
Dungy seemed to dismiss any notion of that Thursday night, although Manning did not take reporters' questions and has avoided making any promises.
``What we wanted to do was really kind of simulate what he was going to do on game day, see how everything felt and see if he wanted to alter his routine for next Sunday,'' Dungy said. ``I think he came away feeling pretty good about it. He told me on the sidelines that if he started, he would have felt in good shape and ready to go.''

Recent NFL Discussions

Carolina Wise Guy NFL Picks 10/23 on Sun, Oct 2016 by Timmy1961
sun night play on Sun, Oct 2016 by sharkey11
sun night play on Sun, Oct 2016 by Timmy1961
nfl 2nd set on Sun, Oct 2016 by Timmy1961

NFL Top Stories

Thumbnail Seahawks vs. Cardinals Prediction Which team will cover tonight on Sunday Night Football when the Cardinals host the Seahawks at 8:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Seahawks vs. Cardinals Odds Two NFC West rivals collide tonight when the Arizona Cardinals face the Seattle Seahawks at 8:30PM ET on NBC....
Thumbnail Patriots vs. Steelers Prediction With Ben Roethlisberger out for the Steelers, are the Patriots a safe bet to cover today when they visit Pittsburgh at 4:25PM ET?
Thumbnail Bucs vs. 49ers Prediction Will the 49ers cash as a small home favorite today when they host the Bucs at 4:05PM ET?
Thumbnail Chargers vs. Falcons Prediction Are the Chargers one of the better underdog plays in Week 7? They'll visit the high-flying Falcons at 4:05PM ET today.
More inNFL Articles  

NFL Team Pages