Peyton Manning will be part of Rob Lowe’s Comedy Central Roast tonight, and based on previews of the special, the former football pro is set to be the butt of some jokes, himself. David Spade even revealed to TMZ that many of the wisecracks directed towards Manning were too racy to be included in the final cut of the roast.
Fortunately, Manning will bite back some stellar retorts of his own, and could walk away with some of the funniest one-liners of the evening. But who will be there to support him after being bogged down with some undoubtedly offensive disses? His wife, Ashely Thomson.
Read on to learn more about Ashley Thompson.
1. They Met Before Peyton’s Freshman Year at Tennessee
Thompson grew up in Memphis, and her parents’ next-door neighbor– who thought the two would be a perfect fit– introduced her to Peyton before he began his freshman year at the University of Tennessee.
According to a blog called Hello, Thompson is one of four children, and was born and raised in Memphis. Her father, Bill, was an investment banker and commercial real estate developer, while her mother, Marsha, was a stay at home mom. Since she was young, Thompson expressed a passion for volunteering and giving back to her community. She told Hello, “Both my parents made it a point to involve us. They taught by example.” She remembers visiting one particular disadvantaged family as a child. “My dad took us. I think he had given them a car. We would play together and we were so much like those children, but then I would come home to my house where I had everything I needed. My life was so different. It really made an impact on me.”
2. They Have 5-Year-Old Twins
After ten years of marriage, Thompson and Manning gave birth to a set of twins– Mosley Thompson and Marshall Williams.
Coincidentally, Eli Manning and his wife Abby gave birth to their daughter, Ava Frances, just days before Thompson and Manning.
The couple have done their best to keep their children out of the media. They made one exception, however, when their son, Marshall, made an appearance at Manning’s postgame press conference after the Broncos beat the Patriots to advance to the Super Bowl 50.
3. Thompson Has Stayed out of the Spotlight Despite Peyton’s Fame
Thompson has very much stayed out of the spotlight, despite the fact that her husband is one of the most famous athletes in the world. She has only attended a handful of public appearances at red carpet events– one of which was a State Dinner at the White House. In a 2011 article, Fox goes as far as to describe her as “notoriously private”.
As a child, Thompson’s sister tells Hello that Ashley was very competitive. “If I would say at the dinner table that I made a 95 on my math test, Ashley would say she made a 98 on her history test.”
4. Thompson Became a Minority Owner of the Grizzlies In 2012
In 2012, FoxSports reported that Thompson had joined a group of minority owners, being assembled by Robert J. Pera, for the Memphis Grizzlies. FoxSports writes, “NFL quarterback Peyton Manning is supporting wife Ashley’s move to join the group of minority owners being assembled by prospective owner Robert J. Pera… Manning and Hardaway join a minority group that includes singer and actor Justin Timberlake and a couple of Memphis businessmen, the person told The Associated Press on Thursday on condition of anonymity because Pera’s purchase of the Grizzlies is pending approval by the NBA.”
Thompson told the news outlet, “As a native of Memphis, it was important to me that the Grizzlies remain in Tennessee and continue to have a positive impact on the community…'”
5. She and Manning Were Married on St. Patrick’s Day 2001
Thompson and Manning were married on March 17, 2001, which was St. Patrick’s Day. Over the years, Peyton has voiced just how important his wife and family have been to his life and football career. In 2014, Manning told People that his family is his good luck charm. “My entire family keeps me positive and they always support me. They will be coming to town to be with me. Without them, I would not be where I am today. I am very grateful.”
Several years ago, Peyton was considering giving up football after suffering a series of neck injuries. Thompson is credited with urging her husband to keep playing. The football player reportedly told Peter King, “Ashley was the one that was saying, ‘Peyton, you’ve got to try. You’ve got to try.'”