Peyton Manning broke the NFL record for most yards passing in a season and helped make the Denver Broncos the highest-scoring team in league history.
Manning threw for 266 yards and four touchdowns in the first half against the Oakland Raiders on Sunday to better Drew Brees’ mark of 5,476 set in 2011 with New Orleans.
Manning’s 5-yard TD pass to Demaryius Thomas with 13 seconds remaining in the half gave him 5,477 yards passing this season.
The Broncos also broke the NFL record for points by a team in a season earlier in the second quarter when Manning threw a 63-yard TD pass to Thomas. Denver entered the game needing 18 points to eclipse New England’s single-season mark of 589 set in 2007.
Last week, Manning broke Tom Brady’s single-season touchdown pass record by throwing his 51st.
BROWNS: Rob Chudzinski didn’t even get a full year to fix the struggling franchise.
Cleveland’s front office fired Chudzinski on Sunday night after his first season, which had a promising start but ended with a seven-game losing streak and a 4-12 record.
Chudzinski had only been in place since Jan. 11, when the Ohio native and lifelong Browns fan was hired by owner Jimmy Haslam and CEO Joe Banner.
The Browns were 4-5 after a win over Baltimore on Nov. 3, but they collapsed in the final two months, blowing several late leads, and the organization decided to cut ties before heading into a second season with Chudzinski.
CHARGERS: Must feel they’re living charmed lives these days.
How else to explain that everything they needed to have happen – and more – fell into place to allow them to sneak into the playoffs for the first time in four years?
“It feels like this season is meant to be special,” Pro Bowl safety Eric Weddle said after another epic, heart-stopping win against the Kansas City Chiefs, 27-24 in overtime on Sunday gave the Chargers the AFC’s final postseason spot. “Whether it happens or not, we’ll read that story at the end. But we’re in, and no one really thought that could happen.”
Nick Novak kicked a 36-yard field goal with 5:30 left in overtime to give San Diego its only lead of the day. The Chargers, who trailed by 10 points in the fourth quarter, then held the Chiefs on downs to win it after they got into San Diego territory.
The Chargers will play a wild-card game next Sunday at AFC North champion Cincinnati.
JETS: Rex Ryan is staying put as head coach.
Owner Woody Johnson announced after the team’s 20-7 victory over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday that Ryan, who has one year remaining on his contract, will return next season. The decision ended several weeks of speculation surrounding the fate of the popular coach.
GIANTS: Quarterback Eli Manning was knocked out of Sunday’s game against the Washington Redskins after spraining his left ankle late in the first half.
COLTS: Adam Vinatieri is the seventh NFL player to score 2,000 career points.
The Colts kicker did it by making a 26-yard field goal as time ran out in the first half of Sunday’s game against Jacksonville.
Vinatieri started the day needing six points to achieve the feat and now has 2,002 career points in 18 seasons – all with either New England or Indianapolis. He has tied George Blanda for sixth on the career scoring list.