Peyton Manning, Broncos off to record-setting pace through 4 weeks

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Peyton Manning is leading the Broncos to new statistical heights. He broke several new records this week.

If you had any doubt that Peyton Manning is the best quarterback alive, he should have shattered those doubts in the first four weeks of the new season. The Denver Broncos shellacked the Philadelphia Eagles, 52-20. Those 52 points are the most in franchise history, but those aren't the only records Manning broke on Sunday. Manning recorded a 146.0 QB rating, his highest since 2008 and his highest-ever rating when throwing 30 or more passes.

Manning now has 16 touchdowns in the first four games of the season, breaking the record for most touchdowns by a quarterback in four games. Kurt Warner held that record with 14 in 1999. In addition, the Broncos have scored 179 points in the first four games, second only to the 1966 Dallas Cowboys with 184.

The seemingly ageless Manning has yet to throw an interception this season, but is on pace for 5,880 passing yards and 64 touchdowns, which would far exceed Tom Brady's record of 50 scores. With the completion of Sunday's win over the Eagles, Manning has not had an interception in 191 passes, which is among the several career-highs that he is already setting this season.

Here is a look at how dominant the Broncos have been on offense this season:

  • Manning's touchdown total (16) leads the league by five and his lack of an interception makes him the only quarterback who has had at least five touchdowns to avoid a pick.
  • In Brady's record-setting 2007 season, he had 12 touchdowns and two interceptions after the fourth game of the year. Manning has 25 percent more touchdowns and lacks a turnover thus far.
  • Through four games, Manning has connected on six touchdown passes with Wes Welker. Demaryius Thomas and Julius Thomas each have four scores.
  • The Broncos are averaging 44.8 points per game and are allowing just 22.8 points per game, nearly doubling their opponents' scores on average on a week-to-week basis.
  • The Broncos' 179 points through four games leads the league by 80 points.
While the Broncos have absolutely demolished their competition with relative ease, the opposing teams have not been terrific. The Broncos' opposition have combined for a record of 4-12. While Manning has thrown for massive yardage and touchdowns, he has done so against the league's third, ninth, 15th and 16th-ranked defenses. The Giants and Eagles are among the bottom-eight teams in points allowed, but that is likely due to their blowout duels against Denver.

It is hard to believe that just two years ago, Manning was shut down for the season with neck surgeries and people thought his career might be over. It seems inconceivable that he's playing the best football of his life at age 37, but that's exactly what he's doing. Manning and the Broncos remain must-see television week in and week out.


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