Peyton Manning has been on track to break a number of the NFL’s single-season quarterback records after busting out with a seven-touchdown performance in the season opener back in September.
On Sunday, in the 15th game of the season, he caught and passed Tom Brady with his 50th and 51st touchdown passes, breaking the record set by the New England quarterback in 2007.
“It’s probably just a temporary record. Brady will probably break it next year,” Manning said with a sly smile. “We’ll enjoy it while it lasts, but I really feel like it’s a team accomplishment.”
His 50th TD pass, to Eric Decker, covered 20 yards and came with 6 minutes, 57 seconds left in the Broncos’ 37-13 victory over Houston. It was his third TD pass of the day and second of the fourth quarter. His fourth TD, a 25-yard pass to Julius Thomas, came with 4:28 left. He has one more regular-season game, next Sunday at Oakland, in which to expand on his totals. Manning finished with 400 yards passing and has Drew Brees’ single season yardage record in his sights. With 5,211, Manning is 265 yards shy of that mark, set by Brees in 2011.
This is the second time Manning has held the single-season TD record; Brady broke Manning’s mark of 49 in 2004. Afterward, the transience of the record was on Manning’s mind.
“I think it’s a unique thing and a neat thing to be a part of NFL history, even though it may be temporary,” he said. “So I’m going to enjoy it as long as it lasts, and hopefully the Hall of Fame will send the ball back once somebody throws for more.”
With the win, the Broncos wrapped up the AFC West title.