2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Manning, Broncos top Chiefs 27-17

By PAT GRAHAM - AP Sports Writer
    2013-11-18 02:23

DENVER (AP) - Peyton Manning wrapped his tender ankles tightly in white tape, just to make sure they were secure against the league's best pass rush.

Turns out, he had nothing to worry about. The Kansas City Chiefs never got near him.

Manning was well-protected Sunday night, throwing for 323 yards and a touchdown to help the Denver Broncos top the Chiefs 27-17.

The Broncos (9-1) passed their first of three straight big tests and took apart the NFL's last undefeated team.

The Chiefs (9-1) struggled, with their vaunted defense getting almost no pressure on Manning, whose mobility has been hampered by those balky ankles.

''It's always great if your quarterback can play and not get hit,'' receiver Demaryius Thomas said.

The Denver win was Part I of this critical AFC West matchup. The rematch is in two weeks at Arrowhead Stadium.

Sure, the Broncos kept Manning clean, but they were hardly perfect. And the Chiefs made it competitive against the high-scoring Broncos, holding them two touchdowns below their 41.2-point scoring average.

Asked if the Chiefs in essence shut down the Broncos, Thomas simply said, ''We scored 27 points.''

Before they meet again, the Broncos must deal with Tom Brady and the New England Patriots, while the Chiefs face San Diego.

''If we want to go all the way, then we need to figure out a way to beat Denver,'' Chiefs linebacker Derrick Johnson said. ''We're going to put this game behind us and get ready for the next one.''

Here are five things we learned from a game that featured the best combined record of two opponents this deep into the season since the NFL merger in 1970:

PROTECTIVE BRONCOS: There was some concern about Manning's long-term health coming into the game, given that the Broncos offensive line had allowed three blindside sacks and fumbles and an assortment of other blows to his lower legs over the previous three games. Tackles Chris Clark, Orlando Franklin and the rest of the line rose to the challenge against the league's leading sack team. Manning didn't get sacked. Didn't even really get his uniform dirty. ''To go sackless against the leading sack defense in the NFL, that's a great testament to those guys,'' Manning said.

STOUT CHIEFS: Granted, they gave up more points than they had all season, more than double the league-leading 12.8 they'd been allowing coming into the game. And yes, the Broncos still amassed 427 yards in offense. But the Chiefs' defense was hardly a pushover, the way so many defenses are when they come up against Manning and the Broncos. The Chiefs forced three three-and-outs, six punts and two field-goal attempts of more than 50 yards. They held an offense that adjusts at halftime and averages 24 points in the third and fourth quarters to 10 in the second half. And those 27 points? Might not seem great but it was Denver's lowest total of the season.

VON WHO?: While so much of the talk about Denver's defense has revolved around Von Miller's absence and return, one of the players the Broncos brought in this season to augment the pass rush is putting up career numbers. Tenth-year veteran Shaun Phillips, formerly of San Diego, had a huge game: 10 tackles, two of those for loss, two quarterback hits, two deflected passes and 1 1/2 sacks to bring his total to nine for the season. His career high was 11 1/2 in 2006.

NOT BUILT FOR COMEBACKS: Good as they've been this season, the Chiefs don't score enough to hang with Denver. At least not yet. They average 23 points. They came into the week ranked 26th on converting trips inside the 20 into touchdowns. Though the offense grinded, Alex Smith was held to 230 yards and Jamaal Charles only gained 78 on the ground. Their formula of solid defense was good enough to win nine straight against weaker teams, but Andy Reid needs to figure out a way to squeeze a few more touchdowns out of this offense for the rematch.

START THE SEARCH: Jack Del Rio is a popular guy these days and figures to keep getting more popular. The defensive coordinator-turned-interim head coach confirmed that he'd been contacted during the bye week by his alma mater, Southern Cal, which is searching for a new head coach. He insists his focus is in Denver. ''Down the road, who knows where that goes,'' he said. If the college thing doesn't pan out, there could be some NFL offers rolling his way, as well, especially if he keeps going this way. He's 2-0 running things in Denver while John Fox recovers from heart surgery. The players like him and, so far, he's pulling all the right strings.

---

AP National Writer Eddie Pells contributed to this story.

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Deone BucannonJul 24 11:32a

Arizona Cardinals S Deone Bucannon was not dropped into the starting lineup during offseason workouts, as the team has faith in FS Tony Jefferson and FS Rashad Johnson. He [ More ]

Ray RiceJul 24 11:31a

Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice will be suspended for the first two games of the season, according to sources. The announcement is expected Thursday, July 24.

Blake BortlesJul 24 11:22a

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles' lower-body mechanics likely will be revised. Bortles' flaw has been over-reliance on his right arm when throwing; he doesn't use his legs enough. A [ More ]

Mikel LeshoureJul 24 11:14a

Detroit Lions RB Mikel Leshoure is currently believed to be the fourth tailback on the club behind RBs Reggie Bush, Joique Bell and Theo Riddick heading into training camp [ More ]

Justin BlackmonJul 24 10:53a

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Justin Blackmon was arrested for possession of marijuana Wednesday, July 23, in Oklahoma.

Jordan PalmerJul 24 10:52a

Chicago Bears QB Jordan Palmer still has the first shot at winning the backup quarterback job, according to head coach Marc Trestman.

R. Griffin IIIJul 24 10:22a

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III's designed running plays might be 'few and far between,' according to head coach Jay Gruden. He still has the green light to scramble [ More ]

Daniel FellsJul 24 09:42a

New York Giants TE Daniel Fells has received the first snap in 11-on-11 drills during the team's two days in training camp. Kellen Davis and Adrien Robinson have [ More ]

Ahmad BradshawJul 24 08:33a

Indianapolis Colts RB Ahmad Bradshaw (neck) has been cleared to practice. Bradshaw is an RB4, but he could be worth more if Trent Richardson fails to produce again.

Roddy WhiteJul 24 08:33a

Atlanta Falcons WR Roddy White signed a four-year extension with the team that will keep him under team control for the next five years, according to sources.

Donald ThomasJul 24 08:33a

Indianapolis Colts TE Dwayne Allen (hip) and OG Donald Thomas (quadriceps, biceps) have been cleared to practice.

Josh GordonJul 24 08:23a

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon will have his appeal hearing for his one-year suspension Aug. 1.

Greg OlsenJul 24 01:43a

Carolina Panthers TE Greg Olsen said he is tired of hearing criticism about Carolina's new receiving corps, which is largely made up of journeymen and unproven commodities. Olsen added [ More ]

Aldon SmithJul 24 01:13a

San Francisco 49ers LB Aldon Smith is expected to meet with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell in the near future, which likely would lead to a decision on any discipline for Smith.

Anthony BarrJul 23 11:23p

Minnesota Vikings LB Anthony Barr was with the team for just a few days during offseason workouts due to NFL rules. Head coach Mike Zimmer is eager to see [ More ]

Sharrif FloydJul 23 11:23p

Minnesota Vikings DT Sharrif Floyd had a good offseason, but head coach Mike Zimmer thinks the defensive tackle is trying to be too fine. 'Sharrif has a lot of [ More ]

C. PattersonJul 23 11:23p

Minnesota Vikings WR Cordarrelle Patterson will remain on kickoff returns despite an expanded role in the offense this season. 'We want our best players to get their hands on [ More ]

Montell OwensJul 23 11:23p

Detroit Lions FB Montell Owens has company, as the team will employ a more traditional fullback in the offense. They signed FB Jed Collins for the role. Owens is [ More ]

Harrison SmithJul 23 11:23p

Minnesota Vikings safeties Jamarca Sanford and Andrew Sendejo will be battling during training camp and the preseason for the starting job opposite FS Harrison Smith. 'That will be interesting, [ More ]

Matt CasselJul 23 11:23p

Minnesota Vikings QBs Teddy Bridgewater and Matt Cassel saw a majority of the snaps during spring workouts, but QB Christian Ponder has a chance to start, and head coach [ More ]

Chad GreenwayJul 23 11:23p

Minnesota Vikings LB Chad Greenway could be used as the starting middle linebacker, according to head coach Mike Zimmer. 'It's a possibility. We keep working him in there. We're [ More ]

Troy NiklasJul 23 10:23p

Arizona Cardinals TE Troy Niklas (hand) has been cleared to participate in training camp, and was working Wednesday, July 23.

Dan WilliamsJul 23 10:23p

Arizona Cardinals NT Dan Williams will open training camp as the team's starting nose tackle with NT Alameda Ta'amu (knee) on the Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) list.

Johnny ManzielJul 23 10:23p

Cleveland Browns head coach Mike Pettine thinks QB Johnny Manziel needs to increase dedication to earn the starting job. 'I think he knows that in order to compete well, [ More ]

Theo RiddickJul 23 10:23p

Detroit Lions RB Theo Riddick has the chance to break into the rotation at tailback, and he has drawn considerable praise from his teammates and coaches for his development [ More ]

Joique BellJul 23 10:23p

Detroit Lions RB Joique Bell (nee) missed most of the offseason due to a knee injury, although he has said his condition is minor and he expects to be [ More ]

Jed CollinsJul 23 10:23p

The Detroit Lions are re-incorporating the traditional fullback into their new offensive scheme this season, and that's why they went out and signed FB Jed Collins.

Cheta OzougwuJul 23 07:23p

New Orleans Saints DE Cheta Ozougwu (undisclosed) cleared waivers and was transferred to the Saints' Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, July 23.

Billy WinnJul 23 06:53p

The Cleveland Browns placed OL Chris Faulk (undisclosed), DE Billy Winn (undisclosed) and LB Tank Carder (undisclosed) on the non-football injury list Wednesday, July 23.

Kyle OrtonJul 23 06:33p

Free-agent QB Kyle Orton (Cowboys) does not want to retire and wants to play in 2014, according to Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.

Conner VernonJul 23 06:23p

The Cleveland Browns placed CB Royce Adams, LB Brandon Magee and WR Conner Vernon on the no-recall waivers list Wednesday, July 23.

Terrance WestJul 23 06:23p

Updating a previous report, Cleveland Browns RB Terrance West (undisclosed) said on his Twitter page that he passed his conditioning test and people need to 'stop making up your [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group