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Manning on Kiffin's progress at Tennessee: Ask me in two years

June 23rd, 2009 12:00 am by Staff Report

According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, former Vol and current Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning says it will be two years before he can properly evaluate Lane Kiffin's performance at Tennessee.


"Kind of what I've learned, it's kind of like when we draft players with the Colts," Manning said Monday morning at Fox Den Country Club during a break in a golf tournament fund-raiser. "Two weeks after the draft they say 'well how was the draft?' I used to be wrong. I used to say 'this guy is great and on and on.'


"My answer now is ask me in two years. I'll tell you how we did in the draft. I think it's kind of that same way (with Kiffin)."


Manning met with Kiffin later in the afternoon, and worked out with current UT players. It was the second time Kiffin and Manning have met in person since Kiffin was hired.


The two first met in March during an event for former UT players to meet the new staff.


"I know he is excited," Manning said. "I know he's got a lot of work to do. It (the SEC) is a hard conference. The conference is like the NFL - it's just gotten so competitive. I know they're working hard, and I'm going to pull hard for them."


Though they've only met in person twice, Manning said he and Kiffin communicate in other ways.


"We trade numbers and texts," Manning said. "He'll shoot me a text with a football question maybe and I'll check in with what's going on."


Manning said UT defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin was "a great hire by Lane to bring his dad in and bring his experience."


"It will be interesting to see what kind of changes he makes to the college game," Manning said of Monte Kiffin.


"He'll probably have some wrinkles that these college teams may not be ready for or have to adjust to."


With drama in the NFL currently swirling around the return -- or retirement -- of Brett Favre, Manning said he is often asked how long he plans to play.


"I feel fairly fortunate because I've been healthy for most of my career," Manning said. "I still feel like I've got some years left in me. The game is still fun for me, I'll say that.


"I want to always be enjoying it. As soon as I'm not enjoying it - not just the games but the weight lifting, the meetings, the plane rides - as soon as none of that is fun then I probably need to find something else to do. Right now I still enjoy it and look forward to going to work every day.


"I'm thinking about it every day, thinking about what I can do to get better, thinking about our team and as long as I'm doing that I plan to play for a number of more years."


CLICK HERE for the complete story from the Knoxville News Sentinel.

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