The Denver Broncos are an incredibly talented football team with endless possibilities. It’s no secret that the team is only going to go as far as quarterback Peyton Manning and the offense takes them, which is why fans in Denver have to be a little concerned with what they witnessed Sunday night. I’m not talking about squandering a 24-0 halftime lead. I’m referring to the cold weather that clearly had an effect on Manning.
What I saw in Manning is the same thing I remember seeing in Brett Favre during the NFC Championship game against the New York Giants. It was one of the coldest games in Lambeau Field history. Giants head coach Tom Coughlin even got frostbite on his face. Favre had the look of an old man who wanted nothing to do with the cold weather and his play suffered because of it.
Fast forward roughly seven years and Manning is now the man who is getting too old for the game he loves. As the contest against the New England Patriots progressed, Manning’s game came to a halt. His passes lost zip and his demeanor was of someone who couldn’t handle the freezing temperature.
Sure, his teammates didn’t help by dropping critical passes, but at the same time, Manning has never done well in cold games. In fact, he has a career 1-6 record in games with temperatures below freezing. It’s certainly not a good sign considering where the Broncos will most likely play their playoff games and the fact that the Super Bowl will take place in an outdoor stadium in one of the coldest parts of the country.
There is no question it’s a huge concern, especially since the weather is taking a turn for the worst. At this point, Denver has to hope that there isn’t much to Manning and the cold weather. Even MVP quarterbacks have down games. On the other hand, a 52.7 completion percentage for just 150 yards certainly makes one wonder.
Nonetheless, it’s definitely something to keep an eye on over the course of Denver’s last five games in which three of the contests will played in cold weather.