Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning is already one of the most decorated passers in NFL history, and he took another step toward cementing his legendary status Thursday by joining an exclusive statistical club.
In the third quarter of Denver's showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs, Manning became the second player in NFL history—along with Brett Favre (71,838)—to throw for 70,000 yards:
The NFL confirmed the achievement on Twitter:
Congratulations, Peyton Manning! That's some exclusive company. #DENvsKC #TNF http://t.co/vO60ySN0532015-9-18 02:31:05
NFL Network's Andrew Siciliano put things in perspective with a jaw-dropping comparison:
Andrew Siciliano @AndrewSiciliano
Peyton Manning's 70,000 passing yards = 39.7 miles worth of throws.2015-9-18 02:33:26
Similarly, ESPN.com's Chris Sprow used another contemporary signal-caller to show just how far Manning has distanced himself from other passing greats:
Chris Sprow @SprowESPN
Aaron Rodgers averages 4,000 yards per season for the next 10 years ... still not at 70,000. Decent, Peyton.2015-9-18 02:32:41
The gulf between Manning and other active quarterbacks is truly remarkable. Entering Thursday night, Drew Brees ranked No. 4 all-time in passing yards with 56,388, while Tom Brady sat at No. 5 overall, having amassed 53,546 yards through the air. Eli Manning (No. 15 overall) has accrued the fourth-most yards among active quarterbacks, but he's just on the cusp of 40,000.
If Thursday's performance where Manning threw for 256 yards was any indication, he will continue adding to his incredible totals at age 39. He addressed concerns that he was well past his prime following the victory over the Chiefs, per Cameron Wolfe of the Denver Post: "I try to stay away from the summaries after 1 game... Maybe let me play at least 2 games, maybe 3 or maybe even 16."
Thursday's voluminous accomplishment ranks among the most impressive of Manning's career, but his single-season records of 5,477 passing yards and 55 touchdown passes continue to top his seemingly never-ending list of accolades.
Already the league's all-time leader in touchdown passes, Manning should be able to surpass Favre—who just became eligible for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame—on the yardage list assuming he's able to stay healthy for the duration of the season.
All statistics courtesy of Pro-Football-Reference.com unless noted otherwise.