Manning, in only a Peyton Manning way, closed the ceremony with a touching message.

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Peyton Manning spent most of his 14 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts throwing countless touchdown passes, breaking records, winning MVP awards and leading the franchise to the Super Bowl XLI title.

The franchise that made him the No. 1 overall pick in 1998 unveiled a statue of the future first-ballot Hall of Famer in front of Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

In May 2016, local Indianapolis artist Ryan Feeney started the process of building the Manning statue, which depicts the quarterback standing on his toes ready to rifle one of his 539 touchdown passes while with the Colts. Feeney put the final touches on the statue Saturday morning.

I came here almost 20 years ago to play quarterback and to try and win a lot of football games, he told the crowd during the halftime ceremony. I thank God every day that I’m an Indianapolis Colt.

In many ways, the mistake-prone game became a sideshow for what happened around it.

While many showed up to thank Manning, who played his final home game in Indy on Jan. 8, 2011, most didn’t anticipate becoming part of another political statement.

Vic Beasley Authentic Jersey Vice President Mike Pence, the former Indiana governor, left shortly after about a dozen San Francisco players dropped to their knees for the national anthem. The Colts locked arms, but none took a knee.

Some reports indicated Pence’s walkout was planned.