Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning threw seven touchdowns in the season opener, but none of them went to 2012 top touchdown-getter Eric Decker.
The overreaction would be to assume that Decker has not only been replaced by Wes Welker and also usurped by tight end Julius Thomas in Denver's offense.
However, Decker had what will likely be his worst game of the 2013 season Thursday night, committing offensive pass interference, fumbling the ball and dropping three passes, including one that would have been a sure touchdown.
Overall, Manning targeted Decker seven times; his average last season was 7.7 per game.
If Decker catches that score this isn't even a conversation, but because he had just two catches while Demaryius Thomas, Welker and Julius Thomas had two touchdowns apiece, it looks like the former Minnesota Golden Gopher is being phased out.
Remember, we thought Welker was being phased out of the New England Patriots' offense last year after he had three catches for 14 yards on five targets in the opener and was replaced in the starting lineup by Julian Edelman.
Of course, those theories look silly now after Welker finished with 118 catches for 1,354 yards on 174 targets.
Decker is going to have his big games while Demaryius Thomas and Welker are going to have their quiet ones. He had three games with two receptions and seven with zero touchdowns a year ago and still finished with 85 catches, 1,064 yards and 13 scores.
And because Manning is so efficient, his receivers don't need to draw 150-plus targets to be top fantasy options. Decker did his damage last season on just 123 targets and saw double-digit targets just four times.
This Broncos offense is going to be a revolving door of production all season, and Decker isn't about to be left spinning around and around without ever emerging through an opening.