Drew Brees Breaks Peyton Manning's All-Time Passing TD Record vs. Colts

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 17, 2019

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees warms up before a preseason NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019, in Carson, Calif. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull )
Kelvin Kuo/Associated Press

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees broke one of Peyton Manning's notable records.


Brees has now thrown more touchdown passes than any quarterback in NFL history after hitting tight end Josh Hill for a score in their game against the Indianapolis Colts on Monday. It was the 540th touchdown pass of his career, which is one more than Manning retired with at the end of 17 seasons.

New Orleans Saints @Saints

𝐃𝐑𝐄𝐖. 𝐁𝐑𝐄𝐄𝐒. Yards leader. Touchdowns leader. RECORD-SLAYER. https://t.co/inFCArqQtV

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Drew Brees gets the 5️⃣4️⃣0️⃣ record πŸ‘ (via @NFL) https://t.co/CuzPnPHwE2

Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, among others, were quick to congratulate Brees on the accomplishment:

JJ Watt @JJWatt

Congratulations @drewbrees Absolute legend.

Russell Wilson @DangeRussWilson

LEGEND! @DrewBrees https://t.co/GFvoYuPxT7

Tom Brady @TomBrady

Congrats drew!! Couldn’t be more deserving. Passing Peyton in anything is an incredible achievement and your records will be tough to beat! But it’s worth trying πŸ˜‰

Adrian Peterson @AdrianPeterson

First Ballot Hall of Famer πŸ’― Congratulations @drewbrees!!! https://t.co/tIiMgGNPjp

Deion Sanders @DeionSanders

Congratulations @drewbrees you are the epitome of excellence! #Truth @Saints

Terrell Owens @terrellowens

Congratulations @drewbrees!! WELL DESERVED! ALL-TIME PASSING TD LEADER!! #540 and counting... #FutureHallOfFamer πŸ‘‰πŸΎThat record isn’t gonna be broken!! @Saints #100thYear What an absolute blessing!

The Saints signal-caller entered the 2019 campaign a mere 19 touchdowns behind Manning with 520. He wasn't the only one in pursuit, as New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was in third place on the all-time list with 517.

It was only a matter of time before the Purdue product passed Manning.

The last time he finished with fewer than 20 touchdown passes in a season was the 2003 campaign when he appeared in 11 games as a member of the San Diego Chargers. He also showed few signs of slowing during a dominant 2018 season when he completed an NFL-best 74.4 percent of his passes for 3,992 yards, 32 touchdowns and five interceptions while leading the Saints to the NFC Championship Game.

It was the 10th time in 11 years that Brees, 40, surpassed 30 touchdown throws, so reaching 20 this season was a formality.

Breaking Manning's records is also nothing new for Brees, who surpassed the former's 71,940 career passing yards last year.

Manning planned ahead and congratulated Brees on the upcoming touchdown record in an amusing video that saw the legend make fun of the fact that he held the yardage record for just 1,000 days and was too busy in retirement to continue offering congratulations:

New Orleans Saints @Saints

PSA: message from Peyton Manning https://t.co/DcZ8eTfXw8

The touchdown record is another notch on Brees' Hall of Fame resume that places him among the best quarterbacks in league history.

He is a Super Bowl champion, 12-time Pro Bowler, Super Bowl MVP and two-time Offensive Player of the Year, and he has now thrown more touchdowns than any other signal-caller ever to lace it up.

Brees will need to continue throwing touchdowns if he wants to hold the record longer than Manning did because Brady is two behind him, still active and coming off a Super Bowl championship. Whichever one plays longer will likely be on top of the list, but the record is Brees' for now.