Being a starting signal caller in the NFL is just like riding a bike to some people, I guess; once you learn how, no matter how long it’s been since you’ve last done it, you can do it again with ease. Well, that may not be true for many people, just one. And that one is none other the arguably the greatest regular season quarterback in NFL history, Peyton Manning. This week, Manning and his Denver Broncos to their show on the road to square off against Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons, should be fun to watch.
Last week in a 31-19 victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers, we watched Manning go from looking like he was trying to fit in, to making an adjustment or two to then looking like he owned the team. During the Broncos’ first four possessions, Manning and the offense didn’t look fluid one bit, including later during the fifth possession when they went into Manning’s traditional no-huddle offense and began to light up the score board. The Broncos finished the game 19-26 with 253 yards and two touchdowns, notching a victory in Manning’s first game since January 8, 2011. Manning also completed his 400th touchdown pass becoming just the third player (and the fastest to reach the mark) in NFL history to do so.
If Denver wants to keep things on the positive side, they’re going to have to let Manning stay in control and let this team become Peyton’s Ponys. If he can continue his traditional no-huddle offense then they should have great success against the Falcons defense this week especially considering the fact that they’ll be playing in a dome. Don’t sleep on this Denver defense, either. They looked extremely impressive last week against the Steelers and could put on a similar performance again this week.
The Falcons were pretty impressive themselves in week one handling the Kansas City Chiefs rather easily with 40-24 in Tony Gonzalez‘s (5 receptions for 53 yards and a score) first trip back to Arrowhead Stadium. Matty Ice looked impressive passing for 299 yards and three touchdowns while completing 23 of his 31 attempts and he’ll need more of the same if the Falcons are to beat Denver this week. Julio Jones has stepped into the role as Atlanta’s number one receiver as he hauled in six Ryan passes for 108 yards and a trip to the endzone.
Atlanta must get Michael Turner (11 carries for 32 yards) going because a repeat performance from last week is going allow Denver’s pass rushers to get in Ryan’s face and their secondary to ball hawk away. If Turner can’t do more damage, then this game could get ugly, quick. Atlanta is also going to need more from their defense as well. The Falcons defense surrendered almost 400 yards (393 to be exact) of total offense to the Chiefs who aren’t half as potent on that side of the ball as the Broncos are.
Peyton in a dome against a defense that isn’t that good. This one is an easy one to pick — I’ll take Denver 38-24.