For Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos, the regular season could not have possibly started in a better way. The team got their revenge for last season’s playoff loss, showed incredible consistency on both sides of the ball and Manning himself put together a performance for the ages.
In fact, it was so good that it may have just locked up the 2013 NFL MVP.
Manning finished the game with one of the best performances ever by a QB. His line read: seven TDs, 462 yards, 141.1 RAT. He is only the sixth quarterback in NFL history to accomplish such a feat.
There was no doubt that Manning and the Broncos had something to prove, and prove it they did. The Ravens ended their playoff hopes last season in the most devastating way but if the first week is any indication, 2013 is going to be a very, very different story for Denver and for Manning.
In fact, after finishing second to Adrian Peterson in MVP rankings last year, Manning’s performance has shot him to the front of the class as the MVP favorite. Even if he doesn’t throw for seven TDs again this season, which he probably won’t, the expectation for Manning is incredibly high, and there is no reason for it not to be.
Manning has an incredible cast of characters and as he showed in the opener, he knows exactly how to utilize each and every one of them. He will spread the ball around and will be tasked with throwing around 40 or so times a game. Denver’s running game is very much a work in progress so at least for the early goings, Manning looks to carry the lion’s share of this offense.
He will have some tough competition in the form of Peterson and others, but if Manning continues to perform like this, it is his to lose hands-down — before the other candidates even get to touch the ball.
Marilee Gallagher is a baseball writer for RantSports.com. You can follow her on Twitter @MGallagher17 like her page on Facebook, or join her network on Google.