On Wednesday, Elway said he realized that question never will be truly answered, "even though when he walks away, Peyton may well have broken every single record."
"I don't think there's ever going to be a 'very best.' I think there's always going to be a conversation," Elway told The Associated Press.
Even another Super Bowl won't help pacify the Manning-haters, according to Elway.
"So, you're going to always have your detractors, but he may have a large percentage of 'who's the best,' you know what I mean?" Elway said. "Yeah, all he can do is he can continue to cement his legacy, especially if he continues to keep going like the year he had this year. And I'm going to try to make sure he has all the weapons to be able to do that."
Manning is the NFL's only four-time MVP, and he's expected to capture his fifth award Saturday night after setting records by throwing for 55 touchdowns and 5,447 yards while directing the highest-scoring team in the league's 93-year history.
Legacy and "best ever" all are subjective points of view. All Manning and Elway can do is continue to win. The rest of us can take up the debate about best quarterback ever.