Manning faring worse vs. more DBs

December, 14, 2009
12/14/09
2:31
PM ET
When the Broncos review film of their loss Sunday at Indianapolis, they’re going to be upset with themselves for letting Peyton Manning off the hook.

Manning had a 121.8 passer rating and three touchdown passes in the Colts’ first four drives.

ESPN Stats & Information alerted me that in the seven possessions after that he completed three of 12 passes for 21 yards and three interceptions with a 0.0 passer rating.

He then rebounded to go four for five for 55 yards and a third touchdown to Dallas Clark on a late fourth quarter drive that provided the Colts with the final 28-16 cushion.

A couple other notes of interest from Stats & Info:

  • It was Manning’s 20th four-touchdown game in 189 career games. He trails only Brett Favre (22 in 286 games) and Dan Marino (21 in 242 games)
  • Through Week 8, Peyton Manning had thrown only two interceptions on 175 pass attempts when the defense fielded five or more defensive backs (87.5 attempts per interception). All three of his interceptions Sunday (two of which were on tipped/deflected balls) came against a Broncos secondary with at least five defensive backs. That makes it 10 interceptions on 221 pass attempts against five or more defensive backs from Week 9-14 -- or 22.1 attempts per interception.

It would be easy to say the Colts' next opponent, Jacksonville, should go heavy with nickel packages to see if they can continue the trend. But the Jaguars have been thin in the secondary the last four games without their best cornerback, Rashean Mathis who’s been dealing with a groin injury. Even if he's back, their secondary depth doesn't rate as a strength.

Paul Kuharsky | email

ESPN Tennessee Titans reporter

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