Peyton Manning leaves the field after the Ravens defeated his Broncos in last season's playoffs./USA TODAY
DENVER - The Denver Broncos won't have to wait long for a chance to avenge their playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens.
Manning and the Broncos will host the defending Super Bowl champions on
Thursday, Sept. 5, in the NFL's annual kickoff game. The Ravens upset
the Broncos in double overtime on a frigid January day in the divisional
playoffs en route to their Super Bowl win.
Ravens were forced to open on the road because of a conflict with an
evening baseball game between the Baltimore Orioles and Chicago White
Sox in Baltimore.
"It's a unique situation, Baltimore not being
able to open up at home. But they're a great team, and we look forward
to playing at home on opening night. That's always an exciting
opportunity," Manning said Thursday before accepting an award as
Colorado's pro athlete of the year.
As if the playoff rematch
alone wasn't enough intrigue - who else can't wait to see Rahim Moore
cover Jacoby Jones, and Champ Bailey on Torrey Smith? - Baltimore
defensive end Elvis Dumervil will make his Ravens debut in Denver, where
he spent the first seven years of his career before his time in Denver
abruptly ended with a fax fiasco last month.
"I think you want to
try to win every game when the schedule comes out. But, hey, they're a
great team, and I think it will be a great game," Manning said.
nation will get even more Manning in Week 2, when Peyton's Broncos
travel to play brother Eli's New York Giants. The brothers have faced
each other twice before, with Peyton's Indianapolis Colts winning both
"Anytime you play your brother, when I play Peyton in a
game, it is special and it is unique," Eli Manning said Thursday. "I
cherish those moments, whether before the game, looking across the field
during the national anthem and seeing my big brother, seeing him at the
coin flip, those are great moments we'll cherish, and hopefully the
Giants can get a win for once."
Contributing: Mike Garafolo