Peyton Manning was released by the Indianapolis Colts after a 14-year stint with the franchise that included a Super Bowl win and four league National Football League MVP awards, the team said on Wednesday.
Manning, 35, missed the entire 2011 season after neck surgery last September and was due a $28 million bonus if the club had decided to keep him.
"We're here to announce the conclusion of Peyton's playing career with the Colts," Colts owner Jim Irsay said during an emotional news conference in Indianapolis. "We're here very much as well to honor all the incredible memories and incredible things that he's done for the franchise."
Doctors have cleared Manning, who broke all of the team's career quarterbacking records and never missed a start before last season, to resume his career and he has resumed training.
The Colts, who had a league-worst 2-14 record during Manning's absence, have the No. 1 overall pick in April's NFL draft, where Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck is widely pegged as the top choice.
(Reporting By Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Frank Pingue)