New York, NY – Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston and New York Jets kicker Nick Folk have been selected as the AFC's top players for the opening week of the NFL season.
Manning earned the offensive award after his stellar performance in last Thursday's 49-27 win over Baltimore to start the campaign. He threw for 462 yards and tied an NFL record with seven touchdown passes.
In addition, the former MVP was not picked off and joined Y.A. Tittle (1962) as the only quarterbacks to throw for seven scores without an interception. He also earned his 24th weekly award, surpassing Tom Brady for the most since the honor was instituted in 1984.
Houston garnered the defensive award for the first time with five tackles and three sacks in Kansas City's 28-2 win over Jacksonville. He played a key role in a defensive effort that limited the Jaguars to 178 total yards.
Folk hit the 48-yard winning field goal in the closing seconds of the Jets' 18-17 triumph over Tampa Bay to pick up the special teams honor. He made each of his three field goal attempts in the victory to claim his third weekly award.
Others considered for the offensive award were Miami receiver Brian Hartline, who had nine catches for 114 yards and a touchdown in a 23-10 win over Cleveland; Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck, who threw for 178 yards with a pair of touchdowns and ran for the winning score in the fourth quarter to give the Colts a 21-17 victory over Oakland; and Houston quarterback Matt Schaub, who threw for 346 yards with three scores and one interception in a 31-28 victory over San Diego on Monday night.
Defensive consideration went to Colts safety Antoine Bethea, who had 11 tackles and sealed Indianapolis' victory over the Raiders with a fourth- quarter interception near the goal line, as well as Miami cornerback Dimitri Patterson, who picked off two passes against the Browns.
Denver punter Britton Colquitt was nominated for the special teams award after averaging 45.6 yards on seven punts with five finishing inside the 20-yard line.