They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Well thousands of YouTube videos would suggest otherwise with pooches with gray whiskers proving that age is a silly reason to quit expanding your horizons. The 39 year-old Peyton Manning is no different. He is eager to get back to football and to learn a system that has proven to be successful in the NFL.

“He has been very excited. He’s been challenged. He said that to me a couple of times, ‘I’m challenged again. I’m having to learn new stuff because I’ve been doing this for so long.’ I think that is good for all of us no matter how long you’ve been in the league,” Gary Kubiak said of Manning Tuesday.

Kubiak, while admitting that it is very early in the season is emphasizing the learning process with not only Manning but the entire roster. He commented on coaching the team during the voluntary veterans workout this week.

“I think there is an emphasis on teaching nowadays, especially at this level because players move, players change, free agency and all those things. Guys don’t stay together for a long, long time. Teams don’t stay together from a whole standpoint like they used to back 15, 20 years ago. I’ve been a good teacher. I’ve been a good learner from a player’s standpoint. They are all important.”

Manning’s reputation for being a historian of the game and notoriously hard working on the field and in the film room has rang true with Kubiak thus far. When asked about any surprises with Manning’s character Kubiak was quick to answer the question.

“I think I’m just being reassured of everything I’ve always been told about him. Nobody works harder. Nobody cares more. He’s very challenging to coach because he’s so bright and has been doing it for long, and that’s a good thing for me and Rick (Dennison) and ‘Knapper.’(Greg Knapp) I think we as coaches need to be challenged, too.”

No. 18 will be entering his 18th season as an NFL quarterback but has yet to grow tired of the game, especially the evolution that every team goes through year after year. All the doubt about whether or not the offense can run successfully through him seems to be entirely absent from the Broncos facility. Even in April both the head coach and the “old” quarterback seem to be brimming with confidence.

“I like to think I’m pretty versatile, believe it or not. I feel like I can execute whatever plays the coach calls. I feel the different offenses I’ve been in that I’ve executed the plays that the coordinator has called. I feel like I can do that. I feel good. We’ve been working hard up until now,” Manning said Tuesday.

Manning is coming off of a season in which injuries slowed him down in the second half of the season and it clearly affected the team’s success. However, all told he was still at an elite level of play among the NFL’s signal callers. He threw for 4,727 yards, 39 touchdowns to 15 interceptions and had a quarterback rating of 101.5 during the regular season.

Kubiak has been a head coach or an offensive coordinator of a NFL team for over 20 years and is coming off of a season in which he rejuvenated the Baltimore Ravens’ offense and Joe Flacco turned in one of his best seasons.

In the 2014 season Kubiak helped lead the Ravens to another playoff berth and showed once again that he can get the best out of his roster. He helped revitalize Steve Smith Sr.’s career and helped return the team to a rushing attack after losing Ray Rice to a season-ending suspension. The Ravens finished the regular season ranked eighth in the league in rushing yards per game (126.2) coupled with a respectable 13th ranked passing yards per game (238.7). None of their major offensive statistical categories dipped below 14th in the league.

The Broncos will be looking for that same kind of balance the Ravens displayed in 2014 while also incorporating the unique skills set of Manning. Like a broken record since he arrived in Denver, Kubiak has reiterated that the team will “do what Peyton does best”.

Obviously the way the 2014-15 season ended and the speculation regarding Manning’s return, his health was a common question asked Tuesday. The quarterback didn’t hesitate to answer it.

“I feel pretty good. I was able to have really good workouts during the time when you’re allowed to come back with all of these rules. I had a good start to the offseason program—the two weeks with Luke Richesson. I felt pretty good out there today. I’m encouraged by that.”

While it is too early to tell how much Manning’s arm will be relied on in 2015, there is little doubt that he will be an expert of Kubiak’s system sooner rather than later. Manning’s persistence to achieve perfection in everything he does has created his success and Kubiak has already seen what his quarterback is willing to do to win and win now.

“He wants to know why. Great players ask why,” Kubiak said. “That’s what great players do. You better have those answers for them so that they can go compete. That’s what you want.”

Kubiak certainly knows the answers to any question regarding his system and Manning, once again is itching to learn and the then teach, another great offense.

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