QB-PEYTON MANNING(on if he would be welcomed to have a ceremony when he breaks the TD record) 12/15/04
"There will be no ceremony, in the game or after the game. I feel uncomfortable talking about it. If it does happen, after that fact, then it would be easier to talk about it. But I'm telling you, I feel like it's getting harder. I mean, I really do. I felt like it was hard to throw two against Houston, and Baltimorehas given up a whopping 10 all season. It's going to be a tough challenge to get it in the end zone. For me, it's just about getting it in the end zone, period, whether it's throwing or running or a quarterback run, which would be highly unlikely. It's just to get it in the end zone. I think sometimes, even defenses and defensive coordinators think that we have to throw, and that's just not the case. Like I said, I'll bore you to death how many times I'll check to the run; first, second, third down. It's such a pivotal game for both teams. It's one we have to win. So, it's hard for me to get into it. Somebody was talking about (Mark) McGwire and his homerun chase (and the game) when he broke the record. Did they even win that game? Does anybody even know or remember? They were out of the playoffs. They weren't even in the mix. We're in such a pivotal situation for our team right now. I need to keep doing my job to help my team win. There's so much on the line still. I know we're in the playoffs, but there are still other things out there. I can't let anything else get in the way of that."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on who he would like to see catch the record-breaking ball) 12/15/04
"That's been the best thing about us, I think, is that it's kind of been somebody else's day on each Sunday. You just never know who that's going to be. I think that's put defenses in a bind somewhat, as to who do they really focus on. For so many years, it was just Marvin Harrison. Now, it's a number of guys. You still just go through the read, whether it's a 1st-and-10 play up field or it's a red zone play for a touchdown. So, you really can't get into that."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on what ball is more important, 48, 49 or the last one) 12/15/04
"I don't really know. I don't know how that works. I've never kept a specific ball, ever. I've had balls painted up, but it's probably a practice ball or a punting ball that they scrub up. So, I don't now what they do with it. The receivers have always kept their touchdown passes, so I don't know if I'll even get to hold on to any of these. Like I said, the 46 I've thrown so far, I have zero of those, I can assure you. If it was the last play of the game or something to win it, it would be different, but it's going to be in the middle of the game if it were to happen. You just have to keep playing."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on if the record-breaking ball is one he would like to keep) 12/15/04
"I feel really weird talking about it because here we are before the game and playing such a good defense. If it happens, we'll just go from there."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on thinking more about the record) 12/15/04
"I'm so humbled just to somewhat be in this situation, because of the respect I have for all quarterbacks, especially (Dan) Marino, whether it's Y.A. Tittle, or what not. I'm kind of enjoying the ride, because it's also come along with winning."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on if setting the quarterback rating means as much or more than the touchdown number) 12/15/04
"I've never understood the rating. I mean, who does. I did set some goals. I always set some individual goals before the season. It's an individual thing, but I think it somewhat correlates with the team. I feel like, 'If I do these things, and I can achieve some of these goals, then that will help our team.' Chances of winning go up if I do my job. And I have the chance to achieve those. I put, "Throw over 40 touchdowns,' and I've done that. I'm holding the line on my single-digit interceptions. I'm toeing the line on that. I'd like to keep it at nine if I could. And we talked about throwing over 70 percent. We have a chance to do that. So, those are the things we kind of set out to do to play at a higher level. We have three tough games. The idea is to try to keep it going, so we'll just go from there."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on the impression QB-Dan Marino and other quarterbacks have made on him) 12/15/04
"It's really just kind of the way they've conducted themselves in their career that's made the biggest impression on me. They always seem to be better the next year. The more I think about this whole deal, the more I'm impressed with what Marino did in his second season. For him to throw 48 touchdowns and lead his team to a Super Bowl, it's really impressive. Like I said, I think it's hard to throw touchdowns, I really do. I threw 29 last year and it felt like a ton. It really did. So, I've never taken it for granted, because it's tough to get in the end zone. I think the game is as hard today as it has been in the seven years I've played. Defenses are more complex. Defensive players are smarter. So, when you move the ball and score points, it kind of makes you feel good about it, especially when you win, because it's hard to win games."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on if his game has reached a different level this season) 12/15/04
"I think every year presents something new. I feel, in my seventh year, I ought to be better than I was in the years before. I believe that. And I think I am, because I've used the experiences that I've learned in seasons before to my advantage, whether it was a good experience or a bad experience, and try to be better from it. So, I kind of take everything as it comes. I'm kind of a one-game-at-a-time, one-day-at-a-time kind of guy. I'm enjoying the moment right now."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on if the emphasis on defensive holding has helped him and other quarterbacks this season) 12/15/04
"I really don't. And I don't want to sound defensive about that. I don't really know an 'emphasis of a rule' means to tell you the truth. Either it's a rule, or it's not a rule. There has been no change, I know that. I haven't seen it. I don't know what the statistics are of defensive calls or not, and I'm sure defensive players will tell you different, but we haven't had a ton of penalties called against us. Most of the plays we execute and hit, touchdowns or what not, have been because of good execution. Sometimes they say, 'These guys are running clean down the middle, wide open.' Well, they bit the fake, and it was a good play. It's not because there was a rule change. I just haven't seen it. To me, when defenses stop you, it's because they made good plays. When they don't, the offense made good plays. That's kind of how I look at it."
QB-PEYTON MANNING(on what his thinking was behind becoming a part of Indianapoliswhen he was drafted to play for the Colts) 12/15/04