Peyton Manning turned 39 on Tuesday. Here are the five best seasons (according to passing yards) by quarterbacks 39 or older:
1) Warren Moon, 1995 (39 years old, 4,228 yards)
2) Brett Favre, 2009 (40 years old, 4,202 yards)
3) Warren Moon, 1997 (41 years old, 3,678 yards)
4) Vinny Testaverde, 2004 (41 years old, 3,532 yards)
5) Brett Favre, 2008 (39 years old, 3,472 yards)
The question is, how much will the new offense allow him to throw? New coach Gary Kubiak has a great system for running the ball, as we saw during his time as the head man in Houston and as the offensive coordinator in Baltimore last season, and his scheme will most likely take passing attempts away from Peyton. Ultimately, then, I don't think Manning will be able to surpass Moon's mark. That said, the downtick in attempts should help him avoid falling off at the end of this season like he did in 2014.
The bottom line for the Broncos' season -- as well as Manning's chances of topping Moon -- is Peyton's arm. Will Denver see the MVP candidate from the first half of the 2014 season or the liability from the final two months of the season?
In today's pass-happy NFL, Moon's numbers are very obtainable. I don't foresee 2015 being a vintage Peyton Manning season -- he has new teammates and a new coach -- but it will be good enough to crack this list.
Frankly, I anticipate Denver running the ball more this year -- Manning can be successful without throwing for 5,000 yards and 50 touchdowns. Thus, he might not need to top that list in order to enjoy a fine season.
Speaking of health ... Tight end Owen Daniels, if he can stay on the field, should have a good season in Gary Kubiak's offense. Another guy to watch: second-year receiver Cody Latimer. Kubiak really talked him up on Tuesday, and I think he can indeed make an impact.
What remains to be seen is what the Kubiak-Manning offense will look like.