DENVER –** Aqib Talib thrives in prime time, and he plays like him, too.
Talib joined the ranks of Deion Sanders, his idol, when he took an Andrew Luck pass 46 yards back for a touchdown, the ninth of his career. He also joined Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive backs Ken Houston and Aeneas Williams in that group tied for fourth all time in pick-sixes, but Sanders means something more to Talib as a touchstone figure with a personality that matched his talent.
"That's like a surreal moment saying that you've got the same amount of interceptions for touchdowns as Deion Sanders," Talib said. "That's my idol. What he did in football and then what he does in the Dallas community right now as far as with the kids, that's like my idol, man. Just to be able to say that is surreal."
It's easy to see Sanders' style in Talib. They have similar body types and skill sets that go with them: good hands, great quickness and speed, terrific vision when the ball's in their hands and, of course, an effusive and unreserved personality.
"I know that's his favorite player; that's his idol," Chris Harris Jr. said. "I know he wants more than him. … Deion's one of the greatest ever with the returns, so now they're going to have to say Aqib's one of the greatest ever with interception pick-sixes."
Moving to fourth in the all-time rankings wasn't the only accolade Talib earned Sunday. His pick-six also meant he moved into sole possession of the Broncos' franchise record for interceptions returned for touchdowns in just 32 regular-season games as a Bronco.
"The great thing about Aqib is if he ever gets his hands on the ball, he's not only a DB, but a returner, too," Head Coach Gary Kubiak said.
With how quickly the pick-sixes have come over the past three seasons, Talib feels like he's cracked some kind of code.
"I think I figured out the formula or something," Talib said, but he's not about to give away the secret. "I can't tell everybody or everybody's going to be taking picks to the crib."
For his accomplishment, Kubiak gave Talib the game ball in the locker room.
"Shout out to my dog, Prime," Talib yelled. "All we do is score tubs!"
The Broncos defeated the Colts to move to 2-0 after a dominant defensive performance at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. (Photos by Eric Bakke unless noted)