It’s good to be Peyton Manning. The Denver Broncos quarterback is a record five-time league MVP, currently the most marketable player in the NFL, loving father to twins, Marshall and Mosley, and he’s headed to the Super Bowl for the fourth time. It’s safe to say the 39-year-old has acquired some success throughout his 17-year tenure in the league and he’s managed to steal our hearts, as well.
Whether he’s throwing for a touchdown or singing the Nationwide jingle in his characteristic New Orleans drawl, we’re always happy to catch Manning on our TV screens. So, we’ll definitely be tuning in to watch him take on Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7. And with rumors flying that this might be his last game, now is a better time than ever to list our five reasons why Manning is football's sweetheart.
1. He's a doting hubby and father
Manning and his wife, Ashley Thompson (above), have been married since 2001 and she has been credited for encouraging him to stay in the league when there was talk he might retire back in 2012. The two welcomed fraternal twins, Marshall and Mosley, in 2011 and the now 4-year-olds make occasional adorable appearances on the field with Manning and at his press conferences. Last year, he told People his family is his good luck charm.
2. He's equal parts talented and humble
The list of Manning's record-breaking accomplishments on the field is long and still growing. The QB added all-time passing yards leader this season, passing Brett Favre. And yet, despite every reason to showboat, he always accepts his glory with that classic humble smile and graciously shakes the hands of opposing players and coaches. He also regularly praises his teammates for his own success, refusing to take full credit for his many broken records.
3. He's really funny
We love a guy with a great sense of humor. Between his many endorsement deals (he rakes in $12 million annually from endorsements alone), Manning takes up a lot of our commercial time. From his DIRECTV spot featuring "Really High Voice" Peyton Manning to getting schooled at ping pong for Nationwide, Manning's ability to make fun of himself is absolutely irresistable.
4. He loves pizza as much as we do
We could never love a man who didn't love his pizza and Manning takes that to the next level: He owns 21 Papa John's pizza shops. Sure, the pizza company is an endorsement partner with the QB but we can't imagine he would invest so much money back into the business if he didn't love the pizza and breadsticks as much as we do. And that's a man after our own heart.
5. He knows how to pull off a suit
No doubt Manning looks great in Broncos orange, but he rocks a suit and tie just as well. The star QB always looks dapper on the red carpet, whether he goes classic black tie or adds some color into the mix. What do you get when you mix one tall drink of water, some serious Southern charm, and a well-tailored suit? An irresistible All-American stud.