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Manning Delivers Six on the Saints

September 29, 2003|From Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS — Peyton Manning visited his hometown Sunday night and humiliated his dad's old team.

Manning became the first NFL quarterback in more than a decade to throw six touchdown passes in a game, setting a team record and leading the Indianapolis Colts past the New Orleans Saints, 55-21.

"It was fun. Anytime you throw six, sure, that's fun," said Manning, who came in with a season total of three touchdown passes. "It was just good execution. We were executing well even when we got stopped."

That wasn't too often.

The Colts -- 4-0 for the first time in seven seasons -- piled on the most points the Saints have allowed since a 62-7 loss to Atlanta in 1973.

"We didn't play well," Saint Coach Jim Haslett said. "That's all there was to it."

Manning completed 20 of 25 passes for 314 yards, with touchdown passes that covered 17, 14, 79, 12, 32 and 11 yards -- all in three quarters.

Marvin Harrison caught six passes for 158 yards and three of the touchdowns.

With his father, Archie, watching in the stands, Manning fell just short of the NFL record for most touchdown passes in a game -- seven, shared by five players: Sid Luckman, Adrian Burk, George Blanda, Y.A. Tittle and Joe Kapp.

Manning is the first quarterback to throw six in a game since Mark Rypien did it for the Washington Redskins against Atlanta on Nov. 10, 1991.

Manning was typically modest after his impressive outing.

"I got good protection. The guys were open," he said. "I know that's boring, but I don't take it for granted. It was our night."

He grew up attending games in the Superdome and cheering for the Saints. Archie Manning is the only New Orleans quarterback to go to the Pro Bowl.

The Saints, already down five defensive starters, lost two more Sunday. Cornerback Tebucky Jones and defensive end Kenny Smith are out indefinitely with knee injuries, and returner Michael Lewis also left the game with a groin injury.

Indianapolis took a 14-0 lead before the Saints (1-3) had a single first down. Manning hit Ricky Williams for a 17-yard touchdown pass to put the Colts up, 7-0. On their second possession, Manning hit Harrison for a 14-yard score to make it 14-0.

"Once we got momentum, it was like a shark in the water, and we kept going," Colt Coach Tony Dungy said. "We didn't feel like we were going to score 55 coming in."

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