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Sacco Sez: Peyton Manning bringing ubiquitous Manning family to Pro Football Hall of Fame soon

The Denver Broncos are blessed with a multitude of riches at this year's Pro Football Hall of Fame, with a franchise-high three inductees taking their place in Canton, Ohio.

In addition to all-time great safeties Steve Atwater and John Lynch, there is the induction of quarterback Peyton Manning.

But Manning's induction just seems a bit different from any of the greats who have gone before.

Manning is part of NFL royalty in a way that we have not seen before and may not see again for decades.

He knows it but is too humble to discuss it, because it deals with that most personal of human elements: family.

Peyton Manning certainly stands by himself as one of the most luminous candles to be enshrined in the Hall, but his own family has been quite a measuring stick. The Mannings are ubiquitous — they are everywhere you look in pro football or on television.

For Manning, going into the Hall of Fame seems like another step in just a natural progression.

We have all seen him in commercials for years and have celebrated him for perhaps the best dry, self-deprecating sense of humor of any athlete.

He and his brother Cooper co-host "College Bowl," an updated version of the great "GE College Bowl" of decades past. Only an injury cut short the brilliant athletic career of Cooper Manning, who has gone on to success in the business world.

Peyton and his brother Eli have recently been announced as the key members of the announcer crew for an alternate "Monday Night Football" telecast, one that will do 10 different "MNF" games on ESPN2.

Pro football's royal family actually began in the late 1960s when father Archie was creating his own legend as the quarterback for the Ole Miss Rebels, then for the New Orleans Saints in the NFL.

It just made sense that Archie would enhance his own legend in his beloved Crescent City.

How about the Manning Passing Academy, which features father and sons and has just recently had its own remarkable milestone. The 25th edition of the Manning Passing Academy took place last week at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana.

The list of passers who have attended the Manning Passing Academy reads like a Who's Who of college quarterbacks over the past three decades.

After his own illustrious career ended, Archie has remained as involved as ever and currently is Chairman of the National Football Foundation, of which I am proud to be a member of the Colorado chapter.

However one touches the game, he or she feels the presence of the Mannings' legacy.

When Peyton is inducted into the Hall of Fame, his father Archie will do the introduction, and we can expect both presentations to be spot on.

Peyton was the first quarterback to lead two franchises to Super Bowl victories, the Indianapolis Colts and the Denver Broncos. His brother Eli also won two Super Bowls with the New York Giants.

Will brother Eli eventually join Peyton in the Hall?

No one knows, but he will certainly have the support of many voters.

And meanwhile, Cooper's son Arch is making his own name shine at Newman High School in New Orleans. He is not the first Manning to attend, and college recruiters and the national press are suggesting that young Arch has a wonderful future.

But limiting ourselves only to what has happened thus far, the Manning legacy spans from the late 1960s with Archie at Ole Miss through his pro career and those of Peyton and Eli as well.

That is nearly 55 years of greatness so far.

Peyton's career with the Broncos was magnificent, including our great victory in Super Bowl 50, selections for NFL Comeback Player of the Year and Most Valuable Player (the only five-time winner in NFL history) honors, and a cavalcade of statistics.

In fact, several years ago I co-authored what many have said was a wonderful book about Peyton's career. I felt that it could have been better, but my New York editor excised a statistical section as "just too overwhelming."

Sometimes the skies are lit up by a shooting star, and so too were the skies above the Mile High City by the four seasons that Manning played here. 

When Peyton Manning takes his place of honor in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he does so not only with some of the greatest statistics in NFL history, but as the flag bearer for the most legendary football family that the National Football League has ever seen.

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