Broncos lead Raiders 27-7 at halftime

By PAT GRAHAM - AP Sports Writer
    2013-09-23 21:15

DENVER (AP) - Peyton Manning threw three short touchdown passes to three different targets, Matt Prater kicked two field goals and the Denver Broncos led the Oakland Raiders 27-7 at halftime on Monday night.

Manning's 12 TD passes this season is an NFL record for the opening three games, breaking Tom Brady's mark of 11 in 2011. Manning has yet to throw an interception this year.

With plenty of time to throw, Manning threw TD strikes to Eric Decker, Wes Welker and tight end Julius Thomas.

Denver's defense kept the Raiders in check until a breakdown in the secondary led to a long score by Denarius Moore. The third-year wideout caught a pass over the middle from Terrelle Pryor and then stepped up, causing cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and safety Duke Ihenacho to collide. After that, Moore was gone, racing 73 yards for the TD.

The first half was all Manning; he was 21 of 24 for 264 yards at halftime. Manning spread the ball around, too, with six different players catching a pass.

Decker and Welker each had six catches. Decker also 113 yards receiving, including a short TD score in the first quarter.

Manning wasn't sacked, either, which was an issue entering the game as Manning becomes accustomed to a new left tackle.

Chris Clark steps in to protect Manning's blindside with Ryan Clady sidelined for the season with a left foot injury. Clark did have a holding call late in the first.

Pryor had a shaky first half, finishing 9 of 13 for 131 yards. He also had 32 yards rushing.

Darren McFadden couldn't find any running room, carrying the ball seven times for 9 yards.

The Raiders struggled early with three straight three-and-out possessions.

With Manning's three TD passes along with Prater's 53- and 41-yard field goals, the Broncos now have 117 points through 10 quarters, which is more than any other team in the league.

Oakland's defense was missing linebacker Sio Moore, who sustained a concussion in an auto accident over the weekend.

The Broncos also were without linebacker Von Miller (suspension) and cornerback Champ Bailey, who returned to practice last week and warmed up before the game on his balky left foot, but was still ruled out.

The Raiders-Broncos game marks a record 17th Monday night meeting between the longtime rivals. It also extends the Broncos' run to 22 consecutive seasons playing on MNF (1992-2013), the longest current streak of any NFL team.


AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

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