Manning expects to start under center for Colts' opener

INDIANAPOLIS -- Peyton Manning expects to be in the starting lineup when the Indianapolis Colts open the season against the Chicago Bears.

The Colts quarterback, who underwent knee surgery in July, was activated Tuesday and went through a pregame workout with the team before the final preseason game Thursday night. He and the rest of the team went through a short practice Friday before coach Tony Dungy sent them home for the weekend.

"I don't really want to get into daily progress reports of how it went. But it was something that we decided to do last week," Manning said of his increased workload in practice. "We're going to just keep progressing this weekend and going through next week. And hopefully we can just keep feeling better."

He said he felt fine after the pregame routine Thursday night.

"It was good to get back there, doing the same things the rest of the guys were doing. Having to do rehab, having to miss practice, it's not really the situation that you want to be in," Manning said. "So it was good to get back out there, get in uniform, be around the guys. And hopefully that can be the sort of the norm from here on out."

The Colts, 1-4 in the preseason, open against the Bears on Sept. 7 in the new Lucas Oil Stadium.

"Certainly I've been preparing for the season opener for some time from a film standpoint. It's good to get back out there on the field and do more physical activity," Manning said. "I feel I got in some good practices this week. I thought that was important."