ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- What
It's something that doesn't make it onto the stat sheet, but is noticed by players -- even those watching at home.
One player who observed Manning's work was Browns Pro Bowl right tackle Mitchell Schwartz, who noted how Manning's pre-snap work set up what would have been a 35-yard run by
Love watching Peyton. Sees corner blitz, calls a zone away from it, gashes the defense.— Mitchell Schwartz (@MitchSchwartz72) January 18, 2016
William Gay crept forward as though he was going to execute a corner blitz, and then after Manning gestured and re-set everyone, he pulled back before creeping close to the line just before the snap.
Manning's abilities in this area were honed in 290 starts over 18 seasons. It is unreasonable to expect a quarterback with only a handful of starts to match Manning's proficiency in this regard, and as
But this is what Manning does best, and a significant part of why he's Hall-of-Fame-bound, no matter what happens on Sunday, or perhaps beyond.
Another key play Manning helped set up was later on that drive, when he found
Other notes from the game:
... Propelled by Anderson's 34-yard run that was set up by
That sort of efficiency imbalance went against the trend of the regular season, when the Broncos averaged 4.47 yards per carry running to the left side, 4.28 to the right and 4.35 up the middle.
... Miscommunication in the secondary was an issue as the Broncos allowed three pass plays of more than 35 yards. Those plays came on the heels of Philip Rivers' 80-yard touchdown pass at the Broncos' expense in Week 17. The Broncos permitted just four pass plays of 35 or more yards in their first 15 games before being gashed the last two games ...