JERSEY CITY - While praising Peyton Manning for his smarts and accuracy, cornerback Richard Sherman of the Seattle Seahawks says Manning throws passes that wobble like "ducks."
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The quarterback of the Denver Broncos didn't contest that fowl comparison Thursday.
"I believe it to be true as well," Manning deadpanned from the podium on the cruise ship the NFL is using for Broncos Super Bowl press conferences. That drew laughs.
About a month ago in his Monday Morning Quarterback column on SI.com, Sherman said Manning was among the more intelligent quarterbacks in the league. He also wrote: "His arm, however, is another story. His passes will be accurate and on time, but he throws ducks."
Sherman has stood by that analysis this week. As did Manning.
"You can see he's a smart player," said Manning. " ... I do throw ducks. I throw a lot of yards and touchdowns-ducks. So I'm actually quite proud of it."
Manning is in the argument about who is the greatest quarterback of all time. He was asked about whether, when he's just chatting with his buddies, who he'd list as the top three of all time. The questioner asked him not to include himself or his brother Eli, quarterback of the New York Giants.
"Me and my buddies don't discuss that. We have other things to talk about," said Manning.
"I don't have a list. ... I feel like I could probably describe the perfect quarterback with a little piece of everybody. Take John Elway's arm, Dan Marino's release, I think Troy Aikman's drop back, Brett Favre's scrambling ability, Joe Montana's two-minute poise."
He got a another laugh when he added, "Naturally, my speed in there."
Manning said his perfect composite quarterback wouldn't just be limited to those he mentioned.
"I could take a piece of everyone, of some of my favorite quarterbacks. I could take 30 traits from different guys and put them in there for that perfect quarterback. So that's kind of how I look at it. I don't have the lists. I know a lot of people have lists.
"Anytime, as John Elway once said, you like to kind of be on the conversation of someone talking about of some their very favorite quarterbacks. That's a nice compliment in itself."
Manning set NFL records for passing yards and touchdowns this season, and the Broncos set a record with four players with 10 or more touchdown catches.
"I haven't heard that comment," said Eric Decker. "Everyone has their own opinion. I speak for myself. He's been the best quarterback to catch from. I've played many years of football and I'll take him at the top."
Added Demaryius Thomas: "It doesn't matter what the ball looks like, it's always in the right spot. That's the main thing with him. I still remember the first day I was throwing with Peyton, throwing the ball, it probably wasn't the prettiest ball but it was always in the right spot and it was easy to catch. I've never had a quarterback like that, so I enjoyed it."
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