Colts announce they’re releasing Peyton Manning

INDIANAPOLIS — Peyton Manning’s record-breaking run as quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts ended Wednesday, when owner Jim Irsay announced the team would release its best player.

“We all know that nothing lasts forever,” Manning said. “Times change, circumstances change, and that’s the reality of playing in the NFL.”

Manning and Irsay each paused frequently, fighting tears and their voices shaking, as they appeared together at a news conference at the Colts’ team complex. It was an unusual and awkward scene, two men whose NFL lives have been so closely intertwined, standing side-by-side in jackets and ties as they told the world they were splitting up.

“This has not been easy for Jim,” Manning said, “and this has certainly not been easy for me.”

The 35-year-old Manning will become a free agent, and is expected to generate interest from a half-dozen or so NFL clubs, provided he’s healthy. Manning is coming off a series of operations to his neck and missed all of last season when his team’s record, not coincidentally, plummeted to 2-14.

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