ENGLEWOOD—Peyton Manning will be the Denver Broncos' starting quarterback for the playoffs, head coach Gary Kubiak told his team Thursday.
The Broncos' second-round AFC playoff game next Sunday, Jan. 17 will mark Manning's first start in two months. He missed six games with a left heel injury before serving as a backup to Brock Osweiler for the Broncos' regular-season finale Sunday against the San Diego Chargers.
Osweiler, meanwhile, suffered a knee sprain in the game against the Chargers and will not practice this week. Osweiler is expected to be able to play, if needed in the Broncos' playoff game next week. His injury did not factor in the decision.
Manning came off the bench midway through the third quarter with the Broncos' down 13-7. He led them to 20 points and a 27-20 victory.
Manning's return to health, his play last week, playoff experience and leadership qualities as the Broncos' begin the postseason no doubt were factors in Kubiak's decision.
The Broncos' starting quarterback the previous three years, Manning led his team to a 7-2 start despite his career-worst individual single-season with 17 interceptions against 9 touchdown passes..
Osweiler played well while Manning was sidelined, posting a 5-2 record.
(© 2016 KUSA)