The stats are gloomy, but Peyton Manning is not. And neither are the Denver Broncos. Yes, Peyton Manning has thrown ten interceptions — including three in Week 6 — against just 7 touchdowns. And yes, that’s the same number of interceptions Manning threw in the entire 2013 season, against –gulp — 55 touchdowns. Result: Broncos are 6-0 this season. They’re a very good football team.
Manning has that intangible quality — he’s a winner and he inspires winning football in his teammates. It’s also hard to say Manning’s relative ineptitude is all his fault this year: star receiver Demaryius Thomas dropped two balls he normally catches in his sleep. And let’s just say the Denver offensive line doesn’t inspire confidence, behaving more like steam than ice. Here’s an important fact to remember about Manning: his boss is John Elway. Elway knows something about winning, about scoring touchdowns, and about interceptions. The Hall-of-Fame Elway threw 23 interceptions against just 22 touchdowns in 1985 — Broncos went 11-5, finishing second in the AFC West. In 1988 and 1989, Elway threw a combined 37 interceptions and only 35 touchdowns. In 1989 the Broncos won the division. Elway never had a season with less then ten interceptions. What was it Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis used to say? Oh yeah, just win baby.