Skip to main content
  1. Sports
  2. General Sports

Broncos hold lead, get to face Patriots in playoffs this time

See also

The Denver Broncos waited 365 days to play the San Diego Chargers on Jan. 12. While the Broncos weren't waiting for the Chargers specifically, they just wanted to play any team in the postseason and put last Jan. 12 behind them at last. For a little while, it looked like Denver could collapse like it did against the Baltimore Ravens a year ago, but the Broncos got their 24-17 win and their AFC title showdown with the New England Patriots this year after all.

The Broncos ultimately sweated out the Chargers in the end, although they didn't break much of a sweat in the first half. While San Diego had no offense to speak of -- and only one passing yard from Philip Rivers in the opening half alone -- Denver had enough to take a 14-0 lead. However, if not for an interception in the end zone right before halftime, the Chargers would have been finished then and there.

San Diego had to fall behind by 17-0 before it finally got a touchdown, yet Denver got it back up to 24-7 in the fourth. Even when the Chargers closed the gap to 24-14 with under six minutes left, they had to resort to an onside kick right away. But when they recovered and got a field goal, the pressure was suddenly on Peyton Manning to get two clinching first downs.

Manning couldn't get a first down to wrap up last year's divisional playoff game with the Ravens -- mainly because the Broncos kept the ball on the ground. This time around, Denver had no choice but to pass on a 3'rd-and-17, with San Diego itching to get the ball back and give the hosts deja vu all over again.

Instead, Manning connected with Julius Thomas near the sidelines, as he stayed in bounds and swung momentum right back to the Broncos. They still needed one more first down to finish things, which Manning got on another third down pass to Thomas. With that, the memories of the Ravens, Jacoby Jones and blown coverage finally went away in Denver.

However, Manning now has to erase the memories of past playoff losses to Tom Brady and the Patriots -- who already erased a big lead against the Broncos this year. Now they will try to prove that Denver and Manning only delayed their latest playoff collapse by a week.



  • The New York Yankees turn the first triple play of the 2014 season
    Watch Video
  • A big third period from the Rangers propel them past Philly in Game 1
  • Donovan McNabb serves time in jail stemming from a December DUI
    NFL News
  • Interview with Bernard Hopkins: 'I'm from Mars, but I fight here on Earth'
  • Are you as excited as LeBron about the NBA Playoffs? We seriously doubt it
  • New details have emerged about the friendly-fire incident that killed Pat Tillman
    Watch Video

Related Videos:

  • Jadeveon Clowney
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518129171" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>
  • Texas Revolution
    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//;autoplay=1"></iframe>
  • Kyle Van Noy
    <div class="video-info" data-id="517347631" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about and apply today!