NEWARK, N.J. — For the world of opportunity that awaits Peyton Manning whenever he decides to leave the NFL, there's about a zero percent chance he'll become a meteorologist.
Talk-show host, maybe, but not a weatherman.
So on Tuesday, some five days before he'll quarterback the Denver Broncos in the first cold-weather outdoor Super Bowl, the perennial all-pro was not about to worry himself with talk of long-range forecasts or arctic cold fronts.
"The weather is going to be what it's going to be," Manning said at the NFL's media day in advance of Sunday's Super Bowl XLVIII clash with the Seattle Seahawks at MetLife Stadium in what promises to be a chilly East Rutherford, N.J. "One of the good things is that we've been able to practice all week in it (at the New York Jets' outdoor facility). We have played in different types of conditions this year and last year, so I think our team is prepared for it. I think we'll be able to handle it no matter what the conditions are."
Weather forecasts — for what they're worth — are now painting a better picture of Sunday's conditions than they did a few days ago. Temperatures are expected to be in the high 30s, and talk of a snow storm creeping into the picture is fading.
Of more particular concern to Manning than the weather seemed to be a physical Seahawks defense, which led the NFL in virtually every category, including points allowed (231), yards allowed (4,378, 273.6 per game), passing yards (172 per game), takeaways (39), interceptions (28) and turnover differential (plus-20).
"Their ability to play together as a unit jumps out at you," Manning said. "They communicate so well. They're on the same page. You don't see anyone who is out of position and they combine that with great talent. That's what makes them so tough to face."
Manning, who set an NFL record with his 5,477 passing yards and 55 touchdown passes, also was complimentary toward one of the main cogs in a Seahawks defense that will try to become the fifth defense in six tries to prevail in a Super Bowl matchup of the league's No. 1 offense and No. 1 defense.
Manning said he didn't see Seattle's smack-talking Richard Sherman trash the 49ers' Michael Crabtree after the NFC championship game, then he praised the shutdown cornerback.
"Sherman is an excellent player," Manning said. "On film, he's impressive to watch. He's an extremely talented player, and you can tell he's a bright player. A lot of guys are smart, but not quite as talented or talented and not quite as experienced or intelligent. He's both and that's what makes him such an efficient cover corner."
When asked if Sherman's cover skills can alter a game plan, Manning deftly sidestepped the question.