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Ex-Colts exec Polian weighs in on Manning's future

The Colts are changing, but is Peyton Manning willing to go along for the ride?

The star quarterback generated a stir Tuesday when, in comments to The Indianapolis Star, he painted a bleak picture of a Colts franchise in transition.

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"It's not a real good environment down there right now, to say the least," he said. "Everybody's walking around on eggshells. I don't recognize our building right now. There's such complete and total change."

One day later, we continue to follow the Manning saga:

» Manning told The New York Times that he enjoyed his voyage to San Francisco to watch his brother, Eli Manning, quarterback the Giants past the 49ers in Sunday's NFC Championship Game.

Peyton explained to the newspaper it provided a respite from "walking around on eggshells" at the team's facility, a phrase he also used in The Star interview.

"It's not the kind of environment you like to be in," Manning told The Times. "It was fun to get out of town."

» Former Colts vice chairman Bill Polian, who was fired earlier this month, told ESPN Radio on Wednesday about the in-house frustration around Manning's ongoing recovery from neck surgery.

"This is the frustration that everyone in the building and, I think, virtually everyone outside felt to some degree or another during the course of the season. "We inside the building for Peyton, people outside of it for their own perception of the team: We just don't know, and nobody can tell you," Polian said. "I'll ... at least paraphrase Dr. (Robert) Watkins, who operated on Peyton back in September. He said, 'There is no potion, there is no medicine, there is no modality, there is no series of exercises, there is no test and there is no surgery that can predict accurately when a nerve can regenerate,' and that is the issue here."

» Polian stressed that Manning could coexist with Stanford's Andrew Luck or another young passer if the Colts go in that direction in April's draft.

"Peyton Manning is all about the team winning games," Polian said. "And so, if any addition to the roster, whomever it might be, was going to help the team win football games, Peyton Manning would be 100 percent behind it. That's what he is. He's the ultimate team player."

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