When they were teammates with the Indianapolis Colts, Peyton Manning and Marvin Harrison connected for an NFL-record 112 touchdown passes.
It’s a number as ridiculous as it is hard to fathom any other duo ever surpassing.
Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk quoted Manning, who doesn’t feel that the record will ever be broken:
“The very first preseason game, my very first pass, I threw a five-yard pass, and Marvin Harrison ran 48 yards for a touchdown,” Manning said during a joint press conference with Indianapolis on Friday. “I remember thinking, ‘The NFL is easy. You just throw a short pass and Marvin Harrison will run for touchdowns.’ Which is pretty much what he did for the entire time we played together. I think many records will be broken — most of my records will be broken — I don’t believe that record that me and Marvin have of throwing the most touchdowns together will ever be broken.”
It’s hard to argue with Manning here. First of all, Manning and Harrison are two of the best ever at their respective positions. Players of that caliber just don’t come into the NFL too often.
Secondly, this is a type of record that has to include two all-time greats suiting up as teammates for an extended period of time.
For that to happen, the teammates need to be roughly the same age. Harrison came into the league in 1996 while Manning joined the NFL in 1998.
It’s difficult to imagine a more potent current combo than Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski. But due largely to their age difference, Brady and Gronk have connected for 64 touchdowns. Realistically, we’d probably need five more healthy seasons from both men to see the Manning/Harrison record approached.
Steve Young and Jerry Rice connected for 85 touchdowns during their Hall of Fame careers, good enough for second on the list. The closest active duo is Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates, who have connected for 77 touchdowns.
Records are made to be broken, but there are a lot of factors that will keep this one from being broken any time soon, if ever.