He's no Manning, but Delhomme is hot

If not for the superhuman Peyton Manning, Carolina's Jake Delhomme would be the highest-rated passer of the playoffs.

Updated: January 15, 2004, 11:59 AM ET
By By Darrell Trimble | NFL Insider
Among the four teams left in the NFL playoff tournament, the Carolina Panthers would be voted the least likely to succeed. It's not that people don't believe they can win big games, it's just that people believe they won't. And why would they?

They're facing a Philadelphia team that has won 13 of its last 15 games. The only team hotter than the Eagles is the New England Patriots, who have reeled off 13 consecutive victories. And the other team still standing has the game's hottest quarterback, Peyton Manning. But the Panthers shouldn't be an afterthought, because they've got the postseason's second-hottest signal caller.

Jake Delhomme may not be a household name, but he's doing his best to change that. If it weren't for the suddenly superhuman Manning, Delhomme would have the highest passer rating (100.8) and highest yards per pass attempt (10.2) in the postseason. And he hasn't exactly been facing lightweights either.