By William Potter on July 12, 2014
Last season, Peyton Manning proved, once again, that records are made to be broken. In 2014, Manning, as well as others, are coming close to setting new standards in many ways. There are sure to be at least a few rewrites in the record books, and here are the ones most likely to be topped this season, and those that could top them.
The new Chicago Bears defensive end has four to his name currently, which ties him for the record. Safeties are rare and difficult to execute, but it's at least worth mentioning. He's not as young as he used to be by any means, but it's not totally outlandish.
At this point, it's hard to expect Charles Woodson to make incredible plays anymore, but he only needs two returns to break Rod Woodson's record (12). It would be difficult to imagine this record falling due to his age, but it's certainly possible.
Drew Brees' 2011 mark of 468 will be difficult to beat, but if anyone could do it, it's Manning. He has one of the best receiving corps in the league and top offensive line, so he has the supporting cast that would be needed to accomplish such a feat.
With Graham's amount of talent and with how much the offense relies on him, it wouldn't be a shock for him to pass Jason Witten's 2012 mark of 110 receptions. The only obstacles for Graham are all the other talented receivers on the team. The Saints aren't lacking talent amongst their receivers so he'll be competing for looks. But he should be, by far, the most used weapon in the passing game.
Hester left the Chicago Bears only needing one kick or punt return touchdown to break his tie with Deion Sanders' record of 19. Now with the Atlanta Falcons, it seems fairly likely that the return specialist will be able to squeeze out one more electrifying return in 2014.
There may not be a better red-zone passing option than Graham. His size and athleticism, not to mention his hands, give him a great chance of breaking Rob Gronkowski's record of 17 in 2011. Scoring that many times is difficult for any receiver (including tight ends), but Graham really is that good.
With the Baltimore Ravens' diminishing offensive firepower, Tucker is sure to have plenty of opportunities to score. He's been one of the most consistent kickers over the past few years, so he's the most likely candidate to break David Akers' record of 44.
Okay, it's a bit of a cop-out to say that the Bengals will beat the own record by extending their playoff losing streak. Their last playoff victory came against the Houston Oilers on Jan. 6, 1990. It's been 23 long seasons without a victory, and there's a good chance the streak won't end here.
It's no secret that Prater has one of the biggest legs amongst NFL place-kickers, and he proved that by booting a record 64-yard field goal in Mile High this year. With Denver's high-powered offense, Prater may not get too many opportunities, but his leg and the high altitude open the door for another new standard.
It may seem ludicrous to think that Graham could literally destroy every single season tight end record in 2014, but there is no better tight end than Graham. He's Brees' favorite target and will be relied on to make big plays this season. It should come as no surprise that he's favored to break Gronk's 2011 record of 1,327 yards.
After losing some talent, the Broncos may find themselves in a few tough spots this season, and it will fall on Manning to dig them out. He only needs three more drives to break Dan Marino's career mark of 51. Though there are some that doubt Manning's abilities in tense situations, this record will be his, whether it's this season or next.
The biggest storyline of the offseason was by far the outcome of Graham's hearing. Though he was branded a tight end, the Saints will make a point to keep Graham around for as long as possible. More than likely, that means that he will end being the highest paid tight end in history.
This is another case of a team breaking their own poor standard. The Cardinals are going to be good this season, but they're still playing in the league's toughest division. If they make the playoffs, they'd still be hard-pressed to reach the Super Bowl, much less win. They haven't had a championship since 1947.
Whenever one of Joe Montana's records is on the line, it makes waves. If Brady throws three touchdowns in this postseason (which, let's be honest, is more likely than not), he will pass Montana's record of 45 scores. Brady has the supporting cast and the talent, so it makes sense that this record will be his.
If Manning throws 18 touchdowns this season, he will pass Brett Favre's mark of 508 and will have thrown more touchdowns than anyone in history. Just to show how much of a shoo-in this record is, the only season Manning didn't throw more than 18 touchdowns was when he sat out the year for his neck injury.
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