Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Peyton Manning put on a performance for the ages, and the Denver Broncos exacted their revenge for last year's heart- breaking loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Divisional Playoffs. Manning became the sixth player in NFL history to throw for seven touchdowns in a single game, as the Broncos spoiled the start of the reigning Super Bowl champion Ravens' title defense with a resounding 49-27 triumph Thursday in the season-opener for both teams at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Five of Manning's touchdown tosses came in the second half, as Denver turned a three- point halftime deficit into a comfortable 25-point cushion by scoring 28 straight points to start the second half. Manning finished 27-of-42 passing for 462 yards and joined Y.A. Tittle, Joe Kapp, George Blanda, Sid Luckman and Adrian Burk as the only players in NFL history to throw for seven scores in a game. Wes Welker, Julius Thomas and Demaryius Thomas each hauled in two TDs for the reigning AFC West champion Broncos (1-0), who finished 13-3 last season and had the No. 1 seed in the AFC before being upended by the Ravens in the postseason. The defending champion Ravens have a much different look this season, with eight starters gone from last year's squad, including future Hall-of-Famer Ray Lewis, safety Ed Reed and wide receiver Anquan Boldin. The departures were evident on the defensive side of the ball, as the Ravens (0-1) allowed a franchise-record 49 points in their first game since their 34-31 triumph over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII. Joe Flacco finished 34-of-62 passing for 362 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions, while Ray Rice managed just 36 yards and a score on 12 carries for Baltimore, which went 10-6 in the regular season last year before running the table in the playoffs.
The Sports Network