With at least four neck surgeries in his rearview mirror, Manning isn't ignoring the reality he's not all the way back.
"I still have a lot of work to do," Manning said Tuesday, one day after a checkup with team doctors. "I'm so glad to be back on the field practicing. ... Last season being injured was new for me. I thought I had a good attitude about it and tried to handle it the best I could. Certainly, it feels good to be back out on the field.
"I continue to rehab. I have work to do and progress that I still need to make."
The Broncos have turned their franchise over to Manning, so you imagine John Elway and company are confident Manning will be close to the player who won four MVP awards with the Indianapolis Colts. Doctors are optimistic about his recovery process as the focus of rehab centers on the nerve damage in the triceps of his throwing arm.
"I can't emphasize enough that I still have rehab to do," he said. "That's still part of the process."
Manning may not ever get back the zip he had before his succession of neck surgeries, but the uncanny knowledge he has of his position will undoubtedly help him cover up some of what he's lost physically. At least that's what the Broncos hope.