While Peyton Manning was overshadowed, literally, by Joe Flacco posters prior to the NFL's season-opening game, by throwing seven touchdowns in the Broncos' 49-27 win over the Baltimore Ravens, he ensured that he was the center of attention during the game and its aftermath.
After throwing for 462 yards on 27-of-42 passing, this was the case on a wide variety of Twitter feeds from pundits and fans alike.
How good was Manning? So good that he seemingly made unknown tight end Julius Thomas a prime fantasy target of ESPN's Mike Peasley after connecting with him for two scores and 110 yards:
Pardon me for a second I need to get to the waiver wire and get Julius Thomas!— Mike Peasley (@PeasESPN) September 6, 2013
TSN 1050 radio personality Gareth Wheeler had more of a comedic response to Manning's performance:
Forget Constanza, Broncos fans will want to name their children Seven after Manning's dominance tonight. #Seinfeld— Gareth Wheeler (@WheelerTSN) September 6, 2013
Baltimore couldn't even disguise Manning's brilliance, as the Ravens' official Twitter page highlighted just how historic Manning's performance was:
49 points is the most points the Ravens have every allowed in a game.— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) September 6, 2013
Rather than harp on Baltimore's defensive ineptitude, the Denver Post's Mike Klis shined the spotlight on how rare Manning's performance was:
Manning is sixth QB with 7 TDs. Others: Sid Luckman, Adrian Burke, George Blanda (AFL), YA Tittle, Joe Kapp— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) September 6, 2013
Furthermore, ESPN's Freddie Coleman shed light on Manning's effectiveness under pressure:
Great TD throw by Peyton Manning!! Hung in there with Canty bearing down on him & threw a strike!! #nfl— Freddie Coleman (@ColemanESPN) September 6, 2013
Still, before fantasy owners curse themselves for not making Manning the first quarterback selected in their drafts, remember one thing: Tonight's performance by Manning will be the exception and not the norm.
Revenge played a factor in Manning playing long enough to amass such numbers, as it's not common for teams up three scores in the fourth quarter to throw the ball—especially on the last play of the game.
Look for Manning's numbers to fall in line with his stats from last season, as the AFC's weak state could lead to Manning handing off a lot more in the second halves of games.
As for Denver's season outlook, look for the Broncos to be an offensive juggernaut en route to the AFC's No. 1 playoff seed.
All stats courtesy of ESPN.com.