Is Peyton Manning the most likable athlete ever?

Is Peyton Manning the most likable athlete ever?
January 28, 2014, 6:30 pm
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CSN Staff

Peyton Manning spoke at Super Bowl XLVIII's Media Day and -- surprise, surprise -- came off likable, friendly and outgoing.

Such has been the case for the NFL's best quarterback and likely MVP. After throwing for an NFL-record 55 touchdown passes this past season, he's now just one win away from his second Super Bowl victory. He's considered a class act on the field, as he doesn't do much trash talking (though he does talk a lot) and goes about his business in a professional manner. Off the field he's one of the few pro athletes who can make funny commercials -- sorry, Aaron Rodgers -- and he's never had an off-the-field incident; in fact, his neck surgery three years ago even made him a feel-good story when he returned to the NFL as a Bronco a year later.

That brought up the discussion in the AT&T U-verse Lounge on whether or not Manning is the most likable athlete of all-time.

"On the field, it's tough to hate him. Off the field, he's in everything," Tom Cooper said. "He's likable."

[RELATED: Is Peyton Manning's legacy at risk?]

Ryan McGuffy added that Manning even stayed past his allotted hour at Media Day today.

Cooper then brought up Mickey Mantle as one player who may stake the claim as the most likable ever:

"You could think of a whole generation of guys who grew up watching Yankees baseball," back in the Golden Age of baseball, and Mickey Mantle was their hero."

What say you? Who do you think is perceived as the most likable athlete ever? Who would you say personally?