Now, the 6-foot-8 quarterback gets his chance to stand tall. The Denver Broncos benched a banged-up Manning on Monday and handed the keys to the offense over to Osweiler.
Time to use a waiver-wire pick on Osweiler, who's owned in one percent of Yahoo fantasy leagues. After taking over for Manning in the third quarter Sunday against Kansas City, Osweiler threw for 146 yards, one touchdowns and an interception.
Osweiler has served as Manning's understudy since being drafted in 2012. This weekend in Chicago will be a chance to show what he can do.
A little trivia: Osweiler ties Matt Blundin (1992-97) and Dan McGwire (1991-95) as the tallest QBs in league history, according to STATS.
Maybe Osweiler can jump-start an offense that hasn't been able to get Demaryius Thomas rolling enough to meet his high draft position nor has found proven production from C.J. Anderson or Ronnie Hillman.
Manning won't even dress. Instead, Osweiler's backup will be rookie Trevor Siemian. As for when Manning might return, well, coach Gary Kubiak didn't exactly know, saying: ''I told him that his total focus is going to be on (him getting healthy).''
Manning, who's been dealing with foot and rib injuries, finished with a career-worst 0.0 passer rating Sunday. That sort of figure actually would've been preferable to what fantasy owners received - a minus-6.6 points in typical leagues.
THE INJURY FRONT
Another week and even more injuries to big names:
- Broncos receiver Emmanuel Sanders passed the concussion protocol, but was held out after getting hurt in the second half. Sanders played Sunday even though he missed a week of practice with a sprained left ankle. He didn't have a catch.
WEEK 10 OBSERVATIONS
- If only you could've known: A hobbled Ben Roethlisberger came off the bench for Pittsburgh to throw for 379 yards and three TD passes. Questionable going into the game with a sprained left foot, Roethlisberger was forced into duty when Landry Jones left with a sprained left ankle. Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant owners got a nice surprise with Big Ben's return as both had big games.
- Adrian Peterson looked a lot like, well, Adrian Peterson as he rushed for 203 yards and a touchdown for Minnesota.
Here are possible waiver additions to consider:
- Jay Ajayi, RB, Miami (owned in 18 percent of Yahoo leagues): Interim coach Dan Campbell wants to get him more carries.
- Johnny Manziel, QB, Cleveland (4.4 percent of ESPN): Threw for a career-high 372 yards.
- Mark Sanchez, QB, Philadelphia (1 percent of Yahoo): Good insurance for Bradford.
- Josh Huff, WR, Philadelphia (zero percent of Yahoo): Had three catches and a TD against Miami.
- Zach Miller, TE, Chicago (1 percent of Yahoo): Caught five passes for 107 yards and two scores against St. Louis.
LOOKING AHEAD TO THURSDAY
Titans rookie running back David Cobb might get his first taste of action at Jacksonville. He was inactive last weekend after coming off the injured reserve-designated to return list this week. Tennessee sure could use a boost after Antonio Andrews had 11 carries for eight yards. Blake Bortles has thrown at least two TD passes in seven of nine games this season.
Pat Graham is an Associated Press sports writer based in Denver. He's played NFL fantasy football for a while and also dabbles in college fantasy football. Follow him on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/pgraham34 .