After hearing all week about how he couldn't pass in cold weather, Peyton Manning responded to his critics on a freezing Sunday at Mile High. Manning threw for 397 yards and four touchdowns as the Broncos improved to 11-2 with a dominant 51-28 win over the Tennessee Titans.
The team seemed to go out of its way to give Manning a platform to prove his cold-weather abilities, as Peyton was allowed to attempt 59 pass attempts.
A game that the Titans led 21-10 midway through the second quarter ended on a 41-7 run by the Broncos.
The Titans jumped out in front thanks to a trio of rushing touchdowns from Shonn Greene and Chris Johnson. Greene capped Tennessee's first drive of the game with a 1-yard score and struck again in the second quarter when he busted loose for a 28-yard touchdown to push the Titans out in front by 11. Between those two scores, Johnson rushed for his fifth touchdown of the season from 3 yards out.
Peyton Manning rallied the Broncos, launching his team on a 24-point scoring run to surge into the lead. Just inside the two-minute warning of the first half, he found his big tight end Julius Thomas in the back of the end zone for an 8-yard touchdown. The score, Thomas's 11th of the season, pushed him past Shannon Sharpe as the Broncos' single-season touchdown leader by a tight end.
After getting the ball back, Manning led his team back downfield for one last scoring opportunity before the half. Matt Prater then set a new NFL record by drilling a 64-yard field goal, cutting the Titans' lead to 21-20.
Denver took the lead for good when Manning hit Demaryius Thomas for a 4-yard touchdown to open the second half, and added on in the ensuing possession when Knowshon Moreno surged into the end zone from 1 yard out.
The Titans wouldn't go lightly though, as Ryan Fitzpatrick responded with a 41-yard bomb to Justin Hunter, who broke free in the secondary and brought in a diving reception to make it 34-28.
That would be as close as the Titans could get, however, as the Broncos would close the game with 17 unanswered points.
Did they cover?
Denver entered the game as 13-point favorites, according to OddsShark.com, easily covering the spread.
Sunday, Dec. 15, 4:25 p.m. ET: Arizona Cardinals vs. Tennessee Titans