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Danieal Manning

Danieal LaCraig Manning was born in Corsicana Texas on August 9, 1982. He played as a defensive back for Corsicana High School and was a three-year starter. As a senior, he completed 3 blocked kicks, 67 tackles, and 3 interceptions. He was subsequently named to the Associated Press All-State Second Team and by the Texas Sports Writers Association.

After high school, Danieal Manning intended to sign with the University of Nebraska, but he never completed enrollment in Nebraska. However, he elected to attend Abilene Christian University instead. As a sophomore, he was named to the Division II All-American third team as defensive back. During his junior year, he was named to the Division II All-American first team as a return specialist. In his senior year, he was named as a defensive back to the Division II All-American first team.

In the 2006 NFL Draft, Danieal Manning was ranked number 9 as a safety available for the draft. He was drafted by the Chicago Bears and was the 42nd pick from Abilene Christian University. This made Danieal Manning the first non-Division I player to be selected in 2006. He was also the second highest pick in the history of Abilene Christian University’s football program, with Johnny Perkins being the highest pick in 1977.

Halfway through the 2008 season, Danieal Manning assumed Devin Hester’s duties as Chicago’s kick returner. In December 2008, Danieal Manning returned an 83-yard kickoff for a touchdown. This marked the Chicago’s first regular season opening kickoff returned for a completed touchdown since 1972. One week before Danieal Manning scored this touchdown, he intercepted Jaguar quarterback David Garrard’s opening pass, and returned it to Jacksonville’s 5-yard line.

Throughout the 2008 season, Danieal Manning led the league in number of 30 plus yard returns and return average, despite only playing half of the season. Although he was Chicago’s starting nickelback in 2008, he successfully competed for starting free safety over Craig Steltz, Kevin Payne, Josh Bullocks, and Corey Graham. Danieal Manning won the starting position shortly before Chicago’s summer training camp. During the 2009 season, Danieal Manning played nickelback on passing downs, while the free safety position was filled by Craig Steltz. As Danieal Manning's defensive duties expanded, Chicago opted to place Johnny Knox, a second year wide receiver to assume Danieal Manning's kick returning duties.

In July 2011, Danieal Manning signed a $20 million, four-year contract with the Houston Texas. From this contract, $9 million was guaranteed. During week 4 of the 2012 season, Danieal Manning intercepted a pass from Tennessee Titan’s quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and subsequently made a 55 yard return for the first defensive touchdown return of Danieal Manning's career.

However, Danieal Manning was released by Houston on March 31, 2014. In April 2014, he signed with the Cincinnati Bengals for a one-year deal. In September 2014, Danieal Manning returned to the Texans.

In July 2014, Danieal Manning announced his retirement from the NFL. Overall, his career in the NFL includes 549 tackles, 3,370 kick return yards, 2 touchdowns, 11 interceptions, and 4 sacks. Throughout his career at Houston, he started 85 times in 106 total games and was considered an outstanding kick returner with an average of 26.8 yards per return on 115 attempts.

Manning, Danieal

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