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Peyton Manning offseason includes Denver hole-in-one, 77 at Augusta

By Will Brinson | NFL Writer

Peyton Manning fired a 77 at Augusta this offseason. (USATSI)
Peyton Manning shot a 77 at Augusta this offseason. (USATSI)

Pretty much everything that you need to know about Peyton Manning's offseason can be found in the Q & A that my colleague, Pete Prisco, did with the Broncos quarterback a few weeks back.

One of the few things that Pete didn't ask Peyton about, though? His golf game. Apparently, it's quite good -- Sam Farmar of the Los Angeles Times, who also did a click-worthy feature on Manning's offseason, reports that Manning's offseason includes a hole-in-one and a 77 at Augusta.

The ace wasn't actually the first of Manning's career and, naturally he wasn't excited at all about it. Wait. What?

"I made one in college, but I was with some buddies," he said. "This was the first one I'd ever seen go in. In college, we looked in the bunker, the woods, everywhere, and somebody said, 'It's in the hole!' It's a little anti-climactic. But the guys I was playing with this time, they were so excited.

"I mean, I was excited. But you've seen me when I throw a touchdown; I'm kind of ho-hum. These guys went nuts."

Sigh. Must be a tough life not sweating hole-in-one's, huh? But, then again, he already has one. And Peyton's a classic "act like you've been there before" kind of guy to me. So maybe this works. (The best part of the story, though, is that he joined a group of guys to play nine holes while waiting on John Elway for a round; one of the guys whom he played with is a Broncos super fan named Tom Harrington who wears an orange tuxedo to games and freaked when Peyton hit the ace.)

You have to think Manning was a little thrilled about firing a 77 at Augusta, though. It was apparently a round played with Elway and head coach John Fox, who was apparently the worst golfer of the group.

"I played horribly," Fox told Farmer. "I started out as a 14-handicap. But after they saw the way I was playing, they moved me to a 20."

Manning's 77 was his best round, and Elway fired a 79, a 74 and a 72. That's, um, pretty good.

So, yeah. Long and short of the story is that Manning's having a pretty good offseason. It's hard to believe that a year ago we were wondering what the status of his long-term health would be.

The real winner in all of this, though? Easily Tony Romo. "Peyton-type time on the job" might end up getting him qualified for the U.S. Open at this pace.

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