Linebacker Stephen Johnson’s fourth quarter blocked punt for a touchdown was the first such play for the Broncos since Ian Gold did it against the Raiders in 2000.
The Broncos were already putting a thrashing on the Philadelphia Eagles, but Johnson’s play took the game from out of reach to point blank embarrassing with the score at 49-13.
“It was like a light, usually I’m blocked and accounted for,” Johnson said. “I was just unblocked so I was like ‘whoa’, went straight to the punter and didn’t necessarily know what I was going to do or how I was going to block it. I just stuck an arm out and it happened, then scoop and score and that’s something we work on every day throughout turnover circuit in practice.”
Johnson wasn’t the only special teams player to score on Sunday. Return man Trindon Holliday recorded a 105-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the first quarter to tie his own record for the longest such play in team history. Holliday has six special teams scores since he was acquired by the Broncos last season.
“I look at it as another phase of the team,” Holliday said of special teams. “A team is consistent on offense, defense and special teams. Our offense is doing their thing. Defense is getting their things. So it’s time for our special teams to really step up and show that we can do it.”
The Broncos put up a franchise record 52 points with the help of the two special teams scores, four Peyton Manning touchdown passes, and a Knowshon Moreno touchdown run for good measure. The team has had nine different players score touchdowns this season.