A win by the Broncos would push them to 3-3, and a victory for the Chargers would give them a 4-2 record with a victory over the other potential playoff team in the division.
These are the types of games Denver wanted Manning for. Here is what you can expect from the future first-ballot Hall of Famer.
Composure on big stage
Manning has a great way of handling stressful situations. Denver going to San Diego with a 2-3 record against the other potential playoff team from the division is a stressful situation.
Oh yeah, and it's on Monday Night Football—that adds to the drama and anticipation.
Manning brings 15 years of experience in the NFL, and his ability to dissect defenses and change the play at the line of scrimmage is still second to none in the league.
Composure is Manning's middle name, and his coolness has a trickle-down effect on the rest of his teammates.
You may not have realized this, but Peyton Manning has been great this year. Considering the fact that he is coming off of surgery, didn't play in 2011 and is on a brand new team, Manning has been more than expected under center.
Manning has 11 touchdowns to only three interceptions and has completed 66 percent of his passes. He hasn't thrown an interception in four of the five games this season, and he has tossed multiple touchdowns in four of those five games.
The one poor game he had was vs. Atlanta, where he only recorded one touchdown and threw three first quarter interceptions.
Basically, Manning has been pretty solid in 19 of his first 20 quarters as a Bronco.
Against San Diego's 20th-ranked pass defense, Manning should be able to have a great day throwing the football. If he can get some protection, he shouldn't force too many balls either.
Manning is 1-5 against the Chargers since 2005. Considering that he is one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play in this league, you can say that the Chargers had his number in Indianapolis.
But now he's on a new team, and they're the Broncos' division rivals. The Broncos have a better understanding of the scheme of San Diego because they are used to playing them twice a year.
Manning and the coaches will develop the perfect game plan to attack the Chargers defense, leaving it up to the Broncos defense to secure the victory.
Manning has struggled in his career against San Diego, but now he's on a new team. And he has been fantastic this season considering he missed the entire 2011 campaign with an injury.
Denver will find a way to slow Philip Rivers down just enough, and Manning will win it on the final possession.
Denver 23, San Diego 20, with Manning passing for 250 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.