NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas
When it comes to defending Peyton Manning, there isn’t a silver bullet in the defensive playbook. There isn’t one particular player, scheme or personnel package that can take the eyes, intelligence, arm and in-pocket mobility away from the Denver Broncos future Hall of Fame quarterback.
Defending the 37-year-old requires a mixture of different looks and disguises. And every NFL defense that has faced the 12-time Pro Bowler has employed its own method in doing so. But thus far into the 2013 season, few teams have seen their creative efforts culminate in the final score. The Broncos are 9-1, and Manning’s 70-percent passing for 3,572 yards, 34 touchdowns and just six interceptions are an integral reason in why.
Manning is orchestrating a prolific offensive attack reinforced by wideouts Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker and Wes Welker, tight end Julius Thomas and versatile tailback Knowshon Moreno. Predominantly through that onslaught, Denver has notched a league-leading 398 points through Week 11.
Yet come 8:30 p.m. ET on Sunday night, the New England Patriots will try to avert that production in meeting No. 14 between Manning and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
Although in order to understand the measures New England might take versus Manning and the Broncos, it’s important to understand the measures Denver’s opponents have taken to find some semblance of success in previous tilts. (more…)