Mac Attack 03/20/12: Duke Head Coach David Cutcliffe joined Mac to talk Peyton Manning heading to Denver, how effective he will be, and how the Blue Devils look in the spring
When Cutcliffe spoke to The Drive last week (read that interview HERE), he stood firmly behind whatever decision Manning would make, it would be largely in part based on the needs of his family. He says Manning made the best possible decision-going back to what Cutcliffe taught Manning when he was a freshman in college!
“There was never any one right answer…I know the due diligence he did with all of this and he found what makes him happy…he remembers what I taught him his freshman year of college, you make a decision and go like heck to make it right! You don’t namby-pamby around…he is moving forward and will be ready to go!”
Obviously there is a lot of speculation as to whether or not Manning will be able to return to the elite league of quarterback he was prior to getting injured, but Cutcliffe believes Manning will take the NFL by storm in August.
“He can play in a game today, but it…he knows he is a work in progress but he can play. It is still March and August is what you are aiming for…where he has come from has been amazing as to where it was and where it is now.”
Many people feel that because Manning has not won more than one Super Bowl, he is not an elite quarterback. Cutcliffe argues that a great quarterback helps a team be great, but it takes more than one strong person to win a Super Bowl. He firmly believes that Manning is one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time.
“Football is not that kind of sport…Dan Marino didn’t win a Super Bowl but anyone that is a football coach or football man…knows [Marino] is everything you would want in a quarterback…teams win Super Bowls, not one man…some guys luck in to it, but Peyton has played in one and won one…nobody in the NFL would tell you anything differently…it is a fun thing for the media to do,…but it just gives you a storyline.”
Cutcliffe was not surprised when Manning asked him to be the person driving his training; he is close with the entire Manning family and is often looked upon for advice, training and friendship.
“We talk all the time…Eli came in this summer and spent three days…our practice facility is extremely private…it was certainly the best place for him…he asked if I would coach him…I am the guy that knows both of them [better than anybody]…Peyton since 17 and Eli since 14…he is comfortable staying with us…it makes it easy.“