TV Schedule: Sunday, Oct. 20, 8:30 p.m. ET, NBC
Stadium: Lucas Oil Stadium
Weather: High 56, Low 37
Line: Denver (-7)
It’s easy to see that the Denver Broncos are the best team in the NFL and Peyton Manning might be the early-season favorite to win the NFL MVP, but there is still a lot of football to be played. Sure, the Broncos are 6-0 and have been destroying any team to step in their path, but no win is an easy one and that was shown against the winless Jacksonville Jaguars a week ago who gave the Broncos a serious fight. Manning has an unbelievable 2,179 passing yards and 22 touchdowns for the top passing attack in the NFL. Having four solid receivers to throw to has something to do with those impressive passing stats for Manning. Demaryius Thomas leads all receivers with 528 yards and four touchdowns on 37 catches. Wes Welker isn’t too far behind, also catching 37 passes for 378 yards and eight touchdowns. Don’t forget about tight end Julius Thomas and wide out Eric Decker. Knowshon Moreno‘s seven rushing touchdowns aren’t bad, either.
On the other side of the field, the Indianapolis Colts will be hosting Peyton Manning for the first time since he left the team two seasons ago and replaced him with Andrew Luck. Colts owner Jim Irsay has been very outspoken this week about his frustration for the lack of Super Bowl titles won with Manning at quarterback. However, the Colts have Luck now who has been better in his first 22 games — statistics-wise — than Manning with Indianapolis. Luck has passed for 1,346 yards and seven touchdowns on the season for the 4-2 Colts with T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Wayne as his favorite targets. Hilton has 385 yards and two touchdowns on 25 catches while Wayne has 33 catches for 453 yards and two scores. Don’t sleep on the run game, either, as Trent Richardson was traded for in recent weeks to lead the rushing attack and he has done just that with 191 yards and two touchdowns.
Defensively, the Colts have the 11th-ranked unit in terms of yards allowed per game. Indianapolis also knows how to keep teams out of the endzone, allowing just 16.3 points per game which is fifth in the league. Denver is getting some key pieces back this week and that should help its 29th-ranked defense and the worst pass defense in the NFL.
PREDICTION: Broncos 35, Colts 27