DENVER — The NFL season started in Denver Thursday night after a storm with gusty wind, a little bit of rain, and lightning delayed kickoff for a little more than 30 minutes.
Then it was the Broncos turn to strike like lightning on the field. Quarterback Peyton Manning threw seven, yes seven touchdown passes. He became the 6th man in NFL history to do that. Joe Kapp of the Minnesota Vikings was the last one to do it. That was in 1969 in a game against the Baltimore Colts.
The Broncos won 49-27 over the defending Super Bowl champions. It was a bit of revenge for the heartbreaking loss Denver suffered at the hands of the Ravens during the playoffs in January.
The Broncos and Ravens were involved in a back-and-forth affair during the first half. It appeared Denver’s defensive front four was having difficulty getting a pass rush on the Ravens’ QB Joe Flacco.
The Broncos star pass rusher, Von Miller, is serving a six-game suspension for violating league policy.
Denver trailed the game 17-14 at halftime.
And then the wheels came off for the Baltimore Ravens. Peyton Manning and the Broncos offense were just too much for Baltimore’s new, re-made defense.
Denver came out and scored 21 points in the 3rd quarter while the Broncos defense didn’t allow any points.
Denver won the game 49-27 on a record-setting night by Manning.
Manning was 27 of 42 for 462 yards with the seven TDs and no interceptions. He finished with a quarterback rating of 141.1.
Wes Welker, Demaryius Thomas and Julius Thomas each had two touchdown catches. Demaryius led Denver receivers with 161 yards. Julius Thomas was the first Denver tight end to go over 100 yards receiving in a game since 2009. He had 100 yards.
Knowshon Moreno was the starting running back. He led all Denver rushers with 28 yards on nine carries.
Joe Flacco was 34 of 62 passing for the Ravens for 362 yards, 2 TDs and 2 interceptions.
Broncos linebacker Danny Trevathan had the bizarre play of the night. He intercepted a Joe Flacco pass and returned it for a touchdown, only to drop the ball non-chalantly early, before crossing the goal line. The ball went through the end zone for a touchback and back to the Baltimore Ravens.
The big banner of Joe Flacco that had been displayed outside Sports Authority Field at Mile High all week was removed before the end of the game.