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Report Says Manning Cleared to Play, New Coaches Join Pagano’s Staff

Super Bowl XLVI has been overshadowed all week by Peyton Manning, and today was no different.

ESPN reported earlier today that Manning had been “cleared to play” by the doctor who performed his September 8th neck surgery on the quarterback. A team spokesman said the Colts’ own doctors had not yet cleared Manning, though ESPN cited an unidentified source in reporting that Dr. Hank Feuer, one of the team’s neurosurgeons, was one of those checked Manning.

Manning has been throwing since at least early December and told reporters Tuesday that he threw to several receivers that day. Colts owner Jim Irsay and Manning are scheduled to meet again next week.

New Colts GM Ryan Grigson said that the $28 million dollar decision is one that the Colts can’t afford to miss on, making the situation with Manning one of the toughest decisions the franchise has ever had.

“You can’t do things to where you are going to hurt the whole franchise with other decisions that you know might hurt at the moment, but in the end they help the sum of the parts,” Grigson said. “It is a tough deal in this business, and it happens at every position, it happens with coaching, it happens with people in personnel and it is completely part of the process and the business.”

The Colts also filled some holes on the coaching staff on Thursday. Grigson announced Thursday that the Colts had hired Greg Manusky as defensive coordinator, Roy Anderson as the secondary coach in charge of safeties and Marwan Maalouf as special teams coach Thursday. About an hour later, new coach Chuck Pagano told reporters that Brant Boyer will assist Maalouf with the special teams.

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