Peyton Manning 'Just ... Average?'

Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos certainly didn't look like one of the NFL's elite teams on Sunday, as the Houston Texans came into Mile High Stadium and defeated Denver, 31-25.

Manning's stat line Sunday was fairly pedestrian, completing 26-of-52 passes for 330 yards and two touchdowns. Though Manning didn't throw an interception and did throw for over 300 yards, a 50 percent completion rate is hardly Manning-esque.

SB Nation's Bomani Jones wasn't too thrilled with what he saw from Peyton Manning on Sunday -- daring to muse that the Hall of Fame quarterback could just be average at this point in his career.

But are they [the Texans] so good that they made Peyton Manning look average? Or is post-injury Peyton just ... average? The Broncos' passing game fared better than the Dolphins or Jaguars did against Houston, but when did we start comparing Manning to Ryan Tannehill and Blaine Gabbert? Even when one accounts for Sunday's drops and the reasonable time it will take for Manning and his receivers to get comfortable with each other, Manning completed just 50 percent of his passes and averaged 6.3 yards per attempt. His passes don't have much zip and, until the Texans were up by 20, he looked pedestrian at best.

"Pedestrian at best" is not what John Elway had in mind when he brought Manning in to be Denver's quarterback. Still, it's early, and there's plenty of time for Manning and the Broncos to get right. The Broncos will look to even up their record at 2-2 next Sunday, when they host the Oakland Raiders.

For the latest on all things Broncos, check out Mile High Report.

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