Last season, the Baltimore Ravens stunned the Denver Broncos in the AFC playoffs. The Ravens were a large underdog after defeating the Indianapolis Colts in the wild card round. The Ravens would shock the Broncos in the next game, losing 38-35 in overtime. The Ravens would go on to defeat the New England Patriots and the San Francisco 49ers to become Super Bowl Champions.
Last night, the Brocncos were out for revenge. They knew they should have defeated the Ravens in the playoffs last year, and they wanted to make sure everyone knew it. Led by superstar veteran quarterback, Peyton Manning, the Broncos made that statement loud and clear, defeating the Super Bowl Champs 49-27.
Manning is touted as one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game. Last night he let the league know that he's back in full force, throwing for seven touchdowns and tying the NFL record for most touchdown passes thrown in a game. On top of that, Manning went 27/42 and 462 yards with no interceptions.
Not only did Manning show that he is back in top form, but the Broncos showed that they are ready to support him. Manning hit seven different receivers on the night and four of them had touchdowns (Demaryius Thomas, 2; Julius Thomas, 2; Wes Welker, 2; Andre Caldwell, 1). His offensive line stepped up to the challenge and allowed just three sacks in the night. The Broncos defense held their own as well, even though the Ravens put up 27 points. They had four sacks, two interceptions and he forced fumble to help keep the offense on the field.
Manning is aging and nearing the end of his career, but if there were any questions as to if he would end up in the Hall of Fame (there shouldn't have been), he cemented his spot last night. Manning joins Sid Lickman (1943), Adrian Burk (1954), George Blanda (1961), Y. A. Tittle (1962) and Joe Kapp (1969) as one of six quarterbacks to ever throw for seven touchdowns in a game. Manning also became just the second player to throw for seven touchdowns and zero interceptions (Tittle, 1962, New York Giants). His 462 yards ranked second most yards per game in his career, and his fantasy owners can rest easy knowing that his 46 points are the second most to ever be scored by a quarterback (Michael Vick, 49).
Peyton Manning will definitely go down in the history books as one of the greatest quarterbacks to hit the NFL turf. In 224 games, he has a 65.2 completion percentage, 59,487 yards (averaging 265.6 per game), 436 touchdowns, 209 interceptions and has a 95.7 career quarterback rating. Now the question is this: Will Peyton Manning be able to follow last night's performance with another huge game against his brother, Eli Manning, and the New York Giants next Sunday?
The Denver Broncos travel to New York on Sunday to face the Giants on foreign territory. The Giants will definitely have the edge, but you can be sure that Manning won't make it easy on their secondary.
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