After appearing in his third Super Bowl championship, 37-year-old Peyton Manning will be answering questions about the future of his playing career. It's something he has been doing ever since his multiple neck surgeries kept him out of the 2011 season. For the Texans, 32-year-old Andre Johnson just finished up his 11th NFL season and has, like Peyton, gets constantly questioned about how much playing time he has left, despite getting better with age. Reggie Wayne, who played with Johnson at the University of Miami, is also still a starting wide receiver at the age of 35.
Colts head coach Chuck Pagano was on the Hurricanes coaching staff at the same time as Johnson, Wayne, and several other players still starting in the NFL over a decade later. Pagano feels those Miami players all had something in common.
"I just think the expectations that those players put on each other down there, the work ethic, their passion for football," Pagano said in an exclusive interview with HoustonTexans.com. "They were all gym rat guys that loved competing and loved playing. They learned early in their careers what it took to be champions, to be No. 1. I think just from a work ethic standpoint, they came into the league and understood what it took early on to be a pro. And they never deviated from that."