SI’s Don Banks has the details of the surgery that Peyton underwent during the lockout when teams had limited medical contact with injured players.
SI.com has learned from NFL sources that Manning actually underwent a fourth, unreported, medical procedure in the past two years, not three as has been widely known.
While it cannot be determined exactly when the unreported procedure on Manning’s neck took place, it was at some point after his May 23 surgery in Chicago to correct a bulging disk, and before his Sept. 9 one-level cervical neck fusion surgery in Marina Del Rey, Calif. The same doctor who operated on Manning’s bulging disk in May did a follow-up procedure last summer in Chicago, as a result of the original surgery. Both of those operations came while the NFL and its players were still engaged in their protracted labor fight, with clubs having very limited medical contact with injured players. At the time of Manning’s September neck operation, that surgery was reported to be his third neck procedure in 19 months. In reality, it was his fourth.
If that isn’t a big enough bombshell, there’s more. On top of the extra surgery that Manning has already had, there are beliefs that Manning may need yet another surgery.
In addition, league sources say Manning’s neck has potentially developed bone spurs just above the point where his latest fusion surgery took place in early September, and the Colts organization is under the belief that it is nearly inevitable Manning will at some point require further surgery, and possibly another fusion procedure, even if he does successfully return to the field in 2012. It’s unclear how any potential long-term neck issues will impact Manning’s decision to attempt a resumption of his NFL playing career later this year.
It wasn’t looking good for the Manning camp before and this certainly doesn’t help.