By Curtis Crabtree, NBC Sports
(NBC Sports) - Peyton Manning's arm was shot at the end of the 2014 season. The 38-year old Manning had lost the velocity on his passes and could not throw as many routes effectively as he used to be able to accomplish.
Now 39, Manning is set to return for his 17th season as a starting quarterback this fall.
Hoping to avoid the same late season regression Manning experienced last year, the Denver Broncos are looking to lessen his workload throughout the season to keep him fresh down the stretch.
According to Mike Klis of the Denver Post, Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak has had preliminary talks with Manning about having Brock Osweiler take more reps at times to help preserve Manning.
“I think as a coach you have to make those suggestions to players,” Kubiak said. “But sometimes with the great ones, the reason they're great is you have to battle them on things like that because they're used to being a part of it every day.
“I want to do what's best for him. I went through the same process with John (Elway) late in his career, and it was a battle for me and Mike (Shanahan) to do some things with him.”
Osweiler has only attempted 30 passes in three seasons while serving as Manning's backup. Manning is notorious about his preparation and wants to play as much as possible. However, that approach may be detrimental at this stage of Manning's career.
It's also in the Broncos best interest to see more of Osweiler. He is set to be an unrestricted free agent after the 2015 season.