INDIANAPOLIS - The Indianapolis Colts can breathe a sigh of relief, as four-time MVP quarterback Peyton Manning was activated off the physically unable to perform list on Monday.
Manning has been recovering from surgery to correct a disk-related issue in his neck on May 23, and the organization recently sounded uncertain if he would be ready for Week 1.
That uneasy feeling that Colts fans had didn't get any better when the team signed recently-retired quarterback Kerry Collins.
Manning, who has never missed a game in his 13 seasons in the league, signed a five-year, $90 million contract last month.
"He will participate in practice on a limited basis," the Colts said in a statement. "All of his practice work will be scripted and on a controlled basis. The participation in limited football activity is a standard procedure in the club's rehab protocol."
Manning has been unable to practice since the end of the lockout in July.
The signing of Collins was probably in part due to Curtis Painter's poor play in the preseason. In the first two games, the third-year pro out of Purdue completed just 8-of-16 passes for 95 yards and an interception. He had a solid third preseason game this past Thursday against Green Bay, throwing for 171 yards and two scores.
Manning has passed for 54,828 yards and 399 touchdowns in 208 consecutive starts. He guided the team to a Super Bowl title after the 2006 season.
Manning was asked on Monday if he will come back to keep his streak of consecutive starts going.
"Absolutely not, no. Like I said the other night, I have to be able to competitively play. I have too much respect for football. I mean could I go out there and take the opening snap or take a series? Yes, I could do that, absolutely.
"But I've got to be able to compete and to help my team win, and that's what's fair to the team, fair to myself. I think my goal, what I've asked the organization, is for it to be my decision. Using the input of the doctors, Jim Caldwell, Erin (Barill), and Clyde (Christenen), not to make any decision until that point, until we absolutely have to. They've promised me that they'll allow that to be the case, and I feel I'll make the right decision for the right reasons. But I don't have to make it yet."
The 11-time Pro Bowl selection also had surgery in March 2010 to relieve pain in his neck caused by a pinched nerve and did not miss camp. However, he was unable to meet with team medical personnel after this spring's procedure because of the lockout.