Jeff Fisher: Peyton Manning has never been better


Set to face Peyton Manning for the 20th time in his long coaching career, Jeff Fisher says the celebrated quarterback has never been better.

"I think he's playing his best ball right now," Fisher said this week, per ESPN's Jeff Legwold. "He's got great people around him, he's really got a good feel, he's not going to take a sack, he's not going to make a bad decision. It's very, very difficult to defend."

Fisher -- whose Rams host the Broncos on Sunday -- pointed to a Denver offense that shares roots with the Colts scheme Manning grew up in, but has bloomed into so much more under play-caller Adam Gase.

"With all due respect to the Colts and that system," Fisher said. "Everybody is moving around, as compared to Marvin (Harrison) playing on one side, Reggie (Wayne) on the other.

"This offense is completely different. They've done an outstanding job of putting outstanding players around him. I think this is the best cast of playmakers he's ever had, and obviously the results are showing that."

The Colts always did a strong job of surrounding Manning with productive pass-catchers, but Fisher is dead on about Denver's current crop of talent. Julius Thomas has emerged as one of the NFL's most dangeorus tight ends, while a healthy Demaryius Thomas ranks among the AFC's finest wideouts. Behind them, Emmanuel Sanders has filled the void of Eric Decker for an attack that has Wes Welker roaming around as a last resort.

Manning, though, earned MVP nods on the latest podcast for one simple reason: He's never played at this level before; never seemed more in control; and never appeared more driven than during a campaign that feels destined to peak with a trip to Super Bowl XLIX.

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