The Broncos have now won the AFC West three years in a row. They also now have the most AFC West division titles (13) in NFL history. Broncos head coach John Fox became just the fourth head coach in NFL history to win a division title in each of his first three seasons with a team.
Peyton Manning had another record-setting day, throwing for 400 yards and four touchdowns against the Texans. With Sunday’s production, Manning now has thrown for an NFL-record 51 touchdown passes this season. This passes the old mark (50) set by Tom Brady in 2007.
After the game, Manning commented on his record-setting performance:
"I really feel like it’s a team accomplishment, certainly an offensive accomplishment. But a lot of people played roles in this. I think it’s a unique thing and neat thing to be a part of NFL history, even though it may be temporary."
"I personally think all season records are going down, especially if they go to 18 games and there won’t be an asterisk next to them. [Tom] Brady will probably break it next year and the year after, so we’ll enjoy it for as long as it lasts and hopefully the Hall of Fame would send the ball back once somebody throws for more."
"Our receivers caught a lot of touchdowns, made a lot of special plays. Eric (Decker)’s touchdown catch today was typical of a lot of great catches these guys have made all season long. Protection, blocking by the tight ends and running backs, play-calling and scheming. Adam Gase has been awesome all year and the coaches that have helped him call those plays and the defense getting us the ball."
"Mike Adams’ interception, in my opinion, was the play of the day today. We were in a little rut on both sides of the ball and that really spring-boarded the whole team. But certainly, I’m very appreciative of it."
Fox had something to say about Manning’s amazing season after the game against the Texans:
“It was great. To see a guy that has worked as hard as he has a lot of his career, and I know for a fact that the two seasons we’ve had him, almost two seasons, are pretty remarkable and really exciting to be around.”
In addition to a new touchdown record, Manning could set the single-season record for passing yards as well. Heading into Week 17, Manning is only 265 yards short of the mark set by Drew Brees (5,476 yards) in 2011. Manning is averaging 347.4 yards passing per game. Even if he only plays part of the game against the Raiders, Manning should be able to establish a new record.
The team has now guaranteed itself a first-round bye in the playoffs. Home-field advantage throughout the playoffs is still up in the air after Week 16. If the Broncos beat the Raiders in their final regular-season game, then they will be the No. 1 seed in the AFC.
Check out the grades for each Broncos player against the Texans.
All quotes and injury/practice observations were obtained firsthand. Record/Statistical information provided via email from the Denver Broncos.