On Wednesday's edition of the "Around The League Podcast," we discussed the span of the Denver Broncos' Super Bowl window as Peyton Manning closes in on age 40.
Whereas many believe the Broncos are going all-in for the 2014 season, we suspect Manning is working with a three-year window before retirement.
Tight end Julius Thomas told NFL Media's Michelle Beisner, in an interview that will air on NFL Total Access Wednesday evening, that Manning isn't approaching this season differently than any previous campaign.
"I'm sure when Peyton was 27 in the prime of his life he still put a lot of pressure on his team to play at a very high level," Thomas said. "I don't think that is the way Peyton looks at it. I think Peyton looks at it like he has had the same goal since he came into this league. To do everything he can and to push his teammates to be in a place where they can go ahead and win that ultimate goal.
"I don't think we have any additional pressure because of Peyton's age. He is going to come out here and he is going to expect the best of us day in and day out, and it is up to us all to live up to that."
It's a credible sentiment from Thomas. Manning has been driving his teammates hard for over a decade now.
In fact, Manning should be credited -- along with stalwarts such as Jerry Rice and Ray Lewis -- with taking preparation to the next level in American professional sports.
As long as that process is an enjoyment rather than a drudgery, Manning can stave off retirement for a few more shots at the Lombardi Trophy.