(Oct. 25, 2006) -- Quarterback Peyton Manning of the Indianapolis Colts, defensive end Derrick Burgess of the Oakland Raiders and rookie kick returner-running back Laurence Maroney of the New England Patriots are the AFC Offensive, Defensive and Special Teams Players of the Week for games played the seventh week of the 2006 season (Oct. 22-23), the NFL announced.
OFFENSE: QB PEYTON MANNING, INDIANAPOLIS COLTS
Indianapolis' Manning passed for four touchdowns and 342 yards without an interception, completing 25 of 35 attempts (71.4 percent) for a sparkling 140.4 passer rating in a 36-22 home victory against Washington. Trailing 14-13 at halftime, Manning ignited the Colts' offense with 7 of 8 passing in the third quarter with three TDs and 138 yards as Indianapolis outscored the Redskins 20-0 in the stanza. When the leader of the undefeated Colts (6-0) passed for his fourth score on the day, it marked his 256th career TD pass, surpassing Pro Football Hall of Famers Dan Fouts (254) and Sonny Jurgensen (255) for 10th place all-time in the category. Manning has now thrown at least four TDs in a game 14 times -- the fourth-most such performances in league history. Manning (34,809) also passed Jim Hart (34,665) for 15th on the career yardage list. Indianapolis is the ninth team in NFL annals to begin consecutive seasons at 6-0.
In his ninth year from Tennessee, this is Manning's 14th Player of the Week Award and his second of the season (Week 2).
DEFENSE: DE DERRICK BURGESS, OAKLAND RAIDERS
Continually disrupting the visiting Cardinals' offense, Burgess tallied 2.0 sacks, shared the team lead in tackles with five, and deflected a pass that was intercepted in Oakland's 22-9 victory against Arizona. Leading 7-0 in the first quarter, a charging Burgess leaped to bat a pass in the air, which was intercepted by teammate Terdell Sands. The Raiders capitalized immediately, scoring on a 32-yard touchdown pass on the next play for a 14-0 lead that they would not relinquish. Both of Burgess' sacks drew 10-yard losses. His other three tackles were all within three yards of the line of scrimmage. Burgess and the Oakland defense would allow the Cardinals to muster fewer than half of the points they averaged on the season entering the game (18.5) and limited the visitors to 1 of 11 (nine percent) on third-down conversion tries. Forcing pressure throughout the day, Burgess was a key contributor to Arizona quarterback Matt Leinart's 36.3 passer rating -- 48.1 points below his rating prior to Week 7 (84.4).
In his sixth year from Mississippi, this is Burgess' first Player of the Week Award. The 6-foot-2, 260-pounder was named the AFC's Defensive Player of the Month for October last season.
SPECIAL TEAMS: KR-RB LAURENCE MARONEY, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
Nursing a 7-3 first quarter lead at Buffalo, rookie Maroney fielded a Bills kickoff and raced 74 yards to the Buffalo 21-yard line, setting up a New England touchdown in a 28-6 win over its divisional foe. Maroney's return -- New England's longest since former Patriot Bethel Johnson chalked-up a 93-yard jaunt on Dec. 4, 2004 -- swung momentum back to the visitors following a Buffalo field goal. The play was the longest non-scoring kick return on the season and stands as the third-longest on the year overall. In addition to his special teams contributions, New England's first-round pick leads all NFL rookies with 361 rushing yards and is tied for the NFL rookie lead with three rushing touchdowns. The win lifts AFC East-leading New England to 5-1 on the season.
In his first year from Minnesota, this is Maroney's first Player of the Week Award.
Other nominees for AFC Offensive Player of Week 7 were:
- Pittsburgh quarterback Charlie Batch, who came off the bench to complete 8 of 13 passes for 195 yards, two TDs and a 145.0 passer rating in a 41-38 overtime loss at Atlanta.
- Denver running back Tatum Bell, who rushed 24 times for 115 yards and a touchdown in the Broncos' 17-7 win at Cleveland. He also caught three passes for 11 yards.
- New England quarterback Tom Brady, who posted a season-high 112.4 passer rating against Buffalo, completing 18 of 27 passes (66.7 percent) for 195 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions.
- Houston quarterback David Carr, who was 25 of 34 passing (73.5 percent) for 224 yards with two TDs without an interception for a 110.4 passer rating in a 27-7 win against Jacksonville.
- Indianapolis wide receiver Marvin Harrison, who scored two touchdowns on seven catches for 73 yards. Harrison now has 113 career touchdowns, tying Pro Football Hall of Famer Lenny Moore for the franchise record.
- Kansas City running back Larry Johnson, who rushed for 132 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries (4.7-yard average) in a 30-27 win against San Diego.
- Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who completed 16 of 22 passes (72.7 percent) for 238 yards, three TDs and a 147.3 passer rating before leaving the game due to injury.
- Pittsburgh wide receiver Hines Ward, who in his first career game in his hometown of Atlanta, led the Steelers with eight catches for career highs in receiving yards (171) and touchdown receptions (3).
- New York rookie running back Leon Washington, who posted two touchdowns and 129 rushing yards on 20 carries (6.5-yard average) in a 31-24 win against Detroit to boost the Jets to a 4-3 record.
Other nominees for AFC Defensive Player of Week 7 were:
- Kansas City defensive end Jared Allen, who chalked up four solo tackles, including 2.0 sacks, three QB hurries, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery.
- Denver rookie defensive end Elvis Dumervil, who recorded 3.0 sacks and recovered a fumble. Dumervil's 3.0 sacks tied the Broncos' single-game rookie record set by Rulon Jones on Dec. 14, 1980, against Oakland.
- Pittsburgh linebacker James Farrior, who tied for the Steelers' lead with eight solo tackles and intercepted his first pass of the season.
- Pittsburgh safety Troy Polamalu, who intercepted his third pass of the season and tied for the team lead with eight tackles on the day.
- New York linebacker Jonathan Vilma, who racked up 11 tackles with an interception and another pass defensed.
- New England linebacker Mike Vrabel, who recorded seven tackles, including a sack and forced fumble.
Other nominees for AFC Special Teams Player of Week 7 were:
- Denver kicker Jason Elam, who accounted for five of the Broncos' 17 points with one field goal and two extra points. Elam is now tied with Eddie Murphy (1,594) for ninth place in NFL history in career points scored.
- Kansas City kicker Lawrence Tynes, who split the uprights from 53 yards with six seconds remaining in regulation for a game-winning kick. The kick was Tynes' fifth from 50 yards or beyond, tying Pete Stoyanovich for the most in team history.