Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 12/6/12
OAKLAND -- Peyton Manning threw for 310 yards and a touchdown, leading the Denver Broncos to their eighth consecutive victory Thursday night, a 26-13 win over the Oakland Raiders at the O.co Coliseum. The Broncos, who clinched the AFC West title last week with a win over Tampa Bay, improved to 10-3 and moved a half-game ahead of Baltimore and New England (both 9-3) in a battle for the No. 2 playoff seed in the conference. The Raiders lost their sixth game in a row and fell to 3-10. They were eliminated from playoff contention last week with a loss to Cleveland. This is the Raiders' longest losing streak since a six-game skid in 2007 under Lane Kiffin. They lost nine straight the year before under Art Shell. Broncos running back Knowshon Moreno carried 32 times for 119 yards and a touchdown. Manning completed 26 of 36 passes and beat the Raiders for the second time this season. Wide receiver Eric Decker caught eight passes for 88 yards, and wide receiver Demaryius Moore had five catches for 83 yards. Raiders quarterback Carson Palmer completed 19 of 30 passes for 273 yards and two touchdowns. But he was intercepted deep in Broncos territory by Champ Bailey, killing a promising first-half drive. Also, he fumbled deep in Raiders territory on Von Miller's strip-sack, setting up a Denver touchdown in the third. Raiders wide receiver Rod Streater caught four passes for 100 yards, while Darrius Heyward-Bey had five catches for 82 yards and a TD. Oakland rookie coach Dennis Allen was on the sidelines just three days after the death of his father, former Falcons linebacker Grady Allen. Raiders starting running back Darren McFadden and backup Mike Goodson suited up for the first time after missing four games with high ankle sprains. McFadden started the game, and Marcel Reece, who started in his place the past four games, went back to his regular job at fullback. McFadden rushed for 52 yards on 11 carries and caught two passes for 12 yards and a touchdown. The Broncos led just 13-7 at halftime, but they quickly took control in the third quarter. Matt Prater capped an 89-yard drive with a 20-yard field goal, increasing Denver's lead to 16-7 with 7:30 left in the third. Then on the ensuing kick, Raiders return man Mike Goodson brought the ball out from eight yards deep in the end zone but was dropped at the 8. On third-and-6 from the 12, Broncos linebacker Miller sacked Palmer and forced a fumble. Broncos nose tackle Mitch Unrein recovered at the Oakland 2. Two plays later Moreno powered into the end zone from the 1, putting Denver ahead 23-7 with 5:07 still left in the third. Prater's 33-yard field goal put Denver ahead 26-7 with 19 seconds remaining in the third. The Raiders cut Denver's lead to 26-13 on Palmer's 56-yard touchdown pass to Heyward-Bey with 5:36 left to play. Oakland went for two points, but Denarius Moore caught Palmer's pass out of bounds. Denver grabbed a quick 13-0 lead but led just 13-7 at halftime. During the half, Manning completed 16 of 22 passes and became the second quarterback to complete 5,000 passes (5,002) in his career behind Brett Favre (6,300). The Broncos took a 7-0 lead on their game-opening drive with Manning hitting tight end Joel Dreessen on a 6-yard touchdown pass. Denver marched 68 yards in 10 plays for the score. The Raiders appeared to force a three-and-out on the drive, but linebacker Philip Wheeler was flagged for holding. Later in the drive on third-and-10 from the Raiders' 38, Manning made Oakland pay for blitzing. He hit a wide-open Moreno in the right flat for a 26-yard gain to the 12. Two plays later, Manning hit Dreessen in the end zone. After Denver's defense forced a Raiders three-and-out, Manning went back to work and led the Broncos to the Oakland 16. But on third-and-8, Raiders defensive end Lamarr Houston sacked Manning for an 11-yard loss, forcing Denver to settle for a field goal. Prater's 43-yard field goal put Denver ahead 10-0 with 5:09 still left in the first quarter. On the Raiders' next possession, Palmer hit rookie wide receiver Rod Streater on a 58-yard strike to the Denver 22. On the next play, Palmer tried to hit tight end Brandon Myers near the right sideline, but Bailey cut in front to intercept and returned 18 yards to the Denver 19. The interception was the 52nd of Bailey's career and 34th as a Bronco, tying him for fourth in Denver franchise history. Manning quickly marched the Broncos deep into Raiders territory again. But he was sacked by Raiders defensive tackle Desmond Bryant on second-and-9 from the Oakland 10 then threw incomplete on third down. Prater's 34-yard field goal extended Denver's lead to 13-0 and, after a quick Raider punt, the Broncos threatened to score again. They moved to the Oakland 28, but on first down, Raiders cornerback Phillip Adams intercepted a Manning pass intended for wide receiver Matthew Willis in the end zone. The Raiders took over and drove 80 yards in 14 plays for a touchdown, Palmer hitting McFadden on a 6-yard screen pass for a score with 1:59 left. That cut Denver's lead to 13-7. NOTES: Raiders starting defensive tackle Richard Seymour missed his fifth consecutive game with lingering hamstring and knee injuries. Desmond Bryant started in his place. ... Broncos starting linebacker Wesley Woodyard and starting right guard Chris Kuper (ankle) missed the game. Manny Ramirez started in Kuper's place, and D.J. Williams started for Woodyard.
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