Peyton Manning has Sports Illustrated cover, NFL’s top-selling jersey
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — “Manning Up,” reads the covers of the nation’s top-selling sports magazine.
Nabbing Sports Illustrated’s West Coast cover this week is just another feather in the cap of the Broncos’ new quarterback. It’s a head piece that’s getting pretty full.
Just two days after NBC announced the Broncos’ 31-19 win over the Steelers got the network its best-ever ratings for a Sunday night game, the NFL announced that Manning has the league’s top-selling jersey.
According to Sports Business Daily, Manning’s sales contributed to a 131 percent increase in team sales for the Broncos, who ranked fourth overall in jersey sales behind the Cowboys, Steelers and 49ers. Manning beat out Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees and his brother Eli for the top spot.
All this after the former Super Bowl MVP completed 19 of 26 passes for 253 yards and two touchdowns in his first game donning the orange and blue. His Week Two test will come against Matt Ryan, another one of the league’s top quarterbacks.
The signal caller for the Atlanta Falcons, who Denver will face on the road this coming Monday night, currently owns the highest quarterback ranking in the league. Ryan completed 23 of 31 passes for 299 yards in Week One as he helped his team dismantle the Broncos’ division rivals from Kansas City 40-24.
Tracy Porter named AFC Player of Week: Though the quarterback is in vogue, Manning wasn’t the only Bronco grabbing headlines Wednesday morning. Cornerback Tracy Porter was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week after helping the team seal its opening week win.
In addition to his 43-yard interception return for a touchdown with less than two minutes remaining in Steelers win, the first-year Bronco added eight solo tackles — second on the team behind Wesley Woodyard — and five passes defended. Those five deflected passes are the most in one game since former Denver Pro Bowler Deltha O’Neal swatted the same number in 2001.
For anyone who was surprised by Porter’s game-winning antics in Week One, don’t be. The former Saint made a name for himself in New Orleans by coming up with such plays. Porter had two game-sealing interceptions in 2009, including the pick that won his team a Super Bowl that same season.