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Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Mike Sando's MVP Watch

By Mike Sando

Peyton Manning
Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos enter their bye week in first place in the AFC West.
Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos have played the fifth-toughest schedule in the NFL to this point, defined by opponents' won-lost percentage (.588).

They have what stands as the easiest remaining schedule by the same measure (.339).

Manning's MVP credentials should only improve, as the Broncos, blessed with a Week 7 bye to tune up their passing game, better their 3-3 record as the season plays out. Those MVP credentials aren't exactly hurting at present, either. The comeback Manning led from a 24-0 deficit to beat San Diego on Monday night had a defining feel to it. Denver looks like the AFC West favorite. Manning has moved atop our MVP Watch list.

"In a stunning 30-minute whirlwind, Manning (who thrust himself into the MVP race Monday night) and his improving Broncos scored 35 unanswered points to shock San Diego," Bill Williamson wrote.

Manning has a league-high 984 yards over his past three games. He has nine touchdowns with one interception over that span. He's looking more like a four-time MVP than an aging player trying to regain past form following career-threatening neck surgeries.