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02 October 2023

Manning's Miami double dream ends with interception

Manning walking off the field after throwing an interception late in the fourth quarter against the New Orleans Saints during the NFL's Super Bowl XLIV game in Miami on Sunday. (REUTERS)

By Reuters

Peyton Manning's dream of a second Super Bowl triumph in Miami ended cruelly with an intercepted pass as his Indianapolis Colts lost 31-17 to his hometown team, the New Orleans Saints.

Manning threw 31 completed passes for 333 yards and one touchdown, and at times on Sunday showed why he is rated the league's top quarterback.

But the pass that flew into the arms of Saints cornerback Tracy Porter late in the fourth quarter is likely to be the play most recalled.

"He made a great play, that's all I can say about it. Porter made a heck of a play," said a dejected Manning, who won the Super Bowl at Dolpins stadium against the Chicago Bears in 2007.

Wide receiver Reggie Wayne had moved into space and Manning, with his side 24-17 down in the fourth, opted for a cross field pass that Porter anticipated superbly before charging 74 yards for a touchdown.

"It's a kind of play we have run a lot and Porter just made a great play. Certainly it is disappointing. We had a good drive going, got down there, had a good field position," he said. "We just didn't play well enough at certain times and in certain phases and the Saints certainly deserve the win."

Manning, whose father Archie was a former Saints quarterback, was reluctant to discuss the joy that his team's defeat meant to his hometown, a city that had never before tasted Super Bowl victory.

"It's hard to address at this point," he said. "I certainly know how excited we were three years ago and how excited our fans in the city of Indianapolis were, so I understand how excited the Saints players, their families and the city of New Orleans is going to be."

Saints quarterback Drew Brees said limiting his counterpart's time on the field had been a big part of the team's success. "That was crucial. The more opportunities you give the guy, the more he is going to find a way to take advantage of you," he said.


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