Thursday, he may not have used those words, but with two losses in the Broncos' last three games, Manning was quick to point out the clock is ticking on the team's chase for the best playoff seeding possible.
The Broncos were shoved around plenty in a 22-7 loss to the St. Louis Rams on Sunday and the lone touchdown amounted to the team's lowest point total since the 2011 regular-season finale, or the last regular-season game the Broncos played without Manning at quarterback.
"Just your sense of urgency has to increase,'' Manning said following Wednesday's practice. "Realizing there aren't many games left and we better get on it, better get going. Need to play better, I need to play better ... You can say all you want, you can talk about doing it, but you've got to go and do it.''
What was once a 6-1 start that had plenty of folks penciling them in to a Super Bowl slot has turned into a 7-3 mark for the Broncos, who went 1-2 in a stretch of three consecutive road games over the last three weeks. The Broncos are now tied, record-wise, with the Kansas City Chiefs atop the AFC West and decidedly behind the New England Patriots (8-2) in the race for home-field advantage in the conference.
The Broncos defeated the Chiefs in Week 2 and face them in Arrowhead Stadium on Nov. 30. The Patriots defeated the Broncos earlier this month so the Broncos lose the head-to-head tiebreaker with them in any playoff seeding.
Over their final six games the Broncos have three home games, beginning Sunday against the Miami Dolphins, to go with three road games against the Chiefs (7-3), the San Diego Chargers (6-4) on Dec. 14, and the Cincinnati Bengals (6-3-1) on Dec. 22.
"I think there is certainly a sense of urgency,'' Manning said.
"We're not happy about last week's game [against the Rams] by any means, with the way we played offensively ... You can want a lot of things, but you have to go and do it.''
"We're doing everything trying to improve and get better, we'd love nothing more than come out and play better."
Manning was asked if the team needed to play with more fire, more emotion.
"I don't think we've not been playing with fire ... I just thought offensively it wasn't a lack of fire, it was a lack of execution,'' he said. "That starts with me, got to play better. I certainly think there's plenty of fire there, but you've got to have more than that.''
Manning has been critical of his own play following each of the last two losses. Against the Patriots and Rams, Manning threw for 438 and 389 yards, respectively, but also threw two interceptions in each.
Manning has thrown nine interceptions this season, but six of those have come in the last three games.
"Just got to be able to be more consistent in decision-making and as an offense we just have got to get back to finishing those drives,'' Manning said. "We have moved the ball fairly well all season and for whatever reason recently we've gotten down to the 30-yard line ... and just kind of stalled.''
For his part, Broncos coach John Fox was asked if Sunday's game was a "statement game."
"They're all statement games," he said. "We only get 16 of them. We've had 10 statements, we've won seven and lost three.''