Once the fusion has healed, the bone is as strong as any other in his neck, if not stronger, several doctors said.
“Did it heal? Is the rest of his neck in pretty good shape? If those two answers are yes, then it gets down to `OK, get out on the field and show me you can perform,’ because it will only get better from here with time,” said Dr. Robert S. Bray Jr., a spine specialist who has treated NHL star Sidney Crosby and Olympic hurdler Lolo Jones.
For the time being, the Manning watch is consuming Miami.
Dwyane Wade reached out to Manning on Twitter, and LeBron James took time in a postgame television interview after the Heat beat Atlanta on Wednesday night to briefly sell Manning on the merits of South Florida.
Will Marino call him?
“I probably wouldn’t do that unless he asks for some advice,” Marino said. “And he has plenty of people that he’s working with to help him make the right decisions.”
“He’s a great football player,” Carpenter said. “I definitely think having Peyton Manning won’t hurt your chances. … Obviously, I don’t know how hard we’re pursuing him. It’s hard to say what Peyton Manning’s thinking. I’m sure he’s going to talk to his family, think about himself and think about where he wants to be and make that decision.”
AP National Writer Nancy Armour contributed to this report.
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