For the last game of week 6 action, we saw a Monday Night Football matchup with Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos facing Philip Rivers and his Chargers. Heading into this game, the sports world was holding Peyton Manning under an intense microscope as with a loss last night that could potentially be the Broncos season going 2-4 before week 7.
In the first, the Broncos would only hold the ball for only 3 minutes the entire quarter. After the first three-and-out from Denver, San Diego would encounter one of their own and would have to punt. Upon receiving the ball, Trindon Holliday would muff a catch that was recovered by Dante Rosario at the Broncos 17. The Chargers would have to settle for a 37-yard FG from Nick Novak to give the teams their first score of the game.
With the Nick Novak ready to kick the ball to the opposition, Denver would encounter another fumble as Omar Bolden lost the ball at the Denver 19 with Corey Lynch making the recovery. With favorable field positioning, Philip Rivers would connect with Antonio Gates for a 15 yard TD pass to make it a 10-0 game.
Jumping ahead to the midway through the 2nd quarter, Peyton Manning would get picked by Quentin Jammer with a pass intended for Matt Willis as Jammer would return it for a 80-yard TD giving the Broncos a 17-0 lead. With another three-and-out luring from Peyton, the Chargers would score once more but that would be their final one of the game before halftime as Philip Rivers linked with Antonio Gates for a 2nd time to make it a 24-0 run. The game seemed all but over heading into the 2nd half, but things would heat up Peyton returning to “old” form.
In the third quarter, Peyton would immediately link up with Demaryius Thomas on the quarter’s first drive for a 29-yard pass to give the Broncos their first score. A few possessions later, Elvis Dumervil would sack Philip Rivers forcing a fumble that was recovered by corner, Tony Carter as he would score a 65-yard TD fumble return.
Skipping to the 4th, Peyton Manning would continue from a previous drive in the 3rd to link up with Eric Decker for a 7-yard TD pass to make it a one possession game at 21-24. The crowd in San Diego was starting to get nervous as their team couldn’t pull off the magic they were showcasing in the first half. With another quick out from the Chargers, Peyton was ready to take over the lead as he led the Broncos on a 2-minute 50-yard drive capped by a TD pass to Brandon Stockley for 21 to give the Broncos a 28-14 lead.
The Chargers faithful immediately became stunned how their team would blow a 24-0 lead at home. With just over 2-minutes left, Philip Rivers would throw his 4th IT of the game intended for Eddie Royal as Chris Harris would return it for a 46-yard TD. Rivers would get sacked a few more times before one more last fumble as the Chargers would finish in the 2nd most shocking game of the year (see Seahawks/Packers).
The Broncos now jump back into playoff contention tied with AFC West rival, the Chargers who they beat last night as the two play once more at Mile-High Stadium the week before Thanksgiving. The Broncos have a pretty favorable schedule from her on out and with their bye week this weekend, they should be able to build momentum off this game to be successful this season.