MANNING, MATHIS HONORED

Peyton Manning has been named the Pro Football Weekly/Professional Football Writers Association of America NFL Most Valuable Player. Manning earlier this month was named the Associated Press' NFL MVP for a third time.

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Manning Named Pro Football Weekly/Professional Football Writers Association MVP
INDIANAPOLIS – He has been honored often this offseason, with a consensus among those who give such awards that Peyton Manning was the NFL's Most Valuable Player this past season.

The consensus grew larger this past week.

Manning, the Colts' nine-time Pro Bowl quarterback who was named the Associated Press' NFL Most Valuable Player earlier this month, this week was named the Pro Football Weekly/Professional Football Writers Association of America Most Valuable Player for 2008.

Manning also was named the Offensive Player of the Year by the organization, an award he also received in 2004, as well as making the organization's All-NFL team.

Manning was named All-AFC in the voting, an honor Colts defensive end Robert Mathis also received.

Manning this season also has been named first-team AP All-Pro, and was the NFL Alumni Association Quarterback of the Year.

After missing training camp and preseason after undergoing knee surgery in July, Manning began the season by throwing 10 touchdowns and nine interceptions in the first seven games.

At the time, the Colts were 3-4, were under .500 after seven games for the first time since 1998 and had just lost back-to-back road games by double digits for the first time since Colts Head Coach Tony Dungy's 2002 arrival.

In nine regular-season games thereafter, Manning – who was named the AFC's Offensive Player of the Week three times this season – completed 209 of 290 passes for 2,153 yards and 17 touchdowns with three interceptions. The Colts won all nine games, beating three division champions – Pittsburgh, San Diego and Tennessee – and also beating New England, which finished 11-5.

In the last nine games, he had eight games with a passer rating over 90 and in December, he completed 90 of 110 passes for 1,054 yards and eight touchdowns with no interceptions. Manning finished the season having completed 371 of 555 passes for 4,002 yards and 27 touchdowns with 12 interceptions for a 95.0 passer rating, his sixth consecutive season with a rating of 95.0 or better.

Mathis, a six-year NFL veteran who has led the Colts in sacks each of the last four season, finished this past season with 11.5 sacks and five forced fumbles. His 37-yard, fourth-quarter fumble return for a touchdown provided the Colts' winning points in a 10-6 victory over Cleveland in late November.

Mathis this season was named to the Pro Bowl for the first time.

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