Manning probably had the best reaction to Brees breaking his record, which he set in 2015 while playing for the Denver Broncos.
New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees topped Manning's mark of 71,940 yards Monday, accomplishing the feat in the latter's hometown of New Orleans, during a nationally televised game against the Washington Redskins.
Brees is now third behind Brett Favre and Peyton Manning with 71,740 yards in his career.
The ball caught by Smith was given to Pro Football Hall of Fame President David Baker for display in Canton, Ohio. Brees's next move was to the sideline, where his wife, children and Saints Coach Sean Payton awaited emotional embraces.
Brees exited the game at the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter.
Naturally, plenty of sports figures took to social media to congratulate Brees on Monday night. Brees now has 1545 yards and 10 touchdowns this season.
The Saints took a chance on Brees in 2006, and the payoff has been extraordinary. He led the Saints to a Super Bowl win over Manning and the Colts in 2009. Manning threw 539 touchdowns in his career. But Brees also would have to outpace Tom Brady, who has 500 TD passes, the only active player with more than Brees in that category. How about that? Hey, I love you guys so much.
"Also, let this serve as the congratulations for the touchdown record, because as you can see, I am very busy".
The game featured other touches meant to honour Brees. "I think Drew's had a couple of big yardage seasons and maybe they haven't been winning as many games, so I think that can be a little bit misleading".
On a more serious note, Manning said Brees broke the record "the right way". "Credit to him for playing as long as he has, at such a high level".