Announcement FanSided Is Hiring! Check Out Our Openings Page. ×

Broncos 37, Raiders 21: Denver Breaks NFL Records in Monday Night Blowout

Sep 23, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos wide receiver Demarius Thomas (88) after the game against the Oakland Raiders at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Broncos won 37-21. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

As if it couldn’t get any more surreal for Denver Broncos fans, well, it has.

Peyton Manning set an NFL record by throwing his 10th, 11th, and 12th touchdown passes of the season, marking the most over the first three games by a quarterback in league history.

The Broncos had a 27-7 halftime lead over the Raiders, and hit something of a wall in the second half (which is not normal for this season) as they coasted to a 37-21 victory on Monday Night Football.

Manning and company had 31 first downs on the night, only two of which came by way of penalty, racking up 536 yards of total offense on just 11 drives. The Broncos ran 73 plays compared to just 51 for the Oakland Raiders, and the Denver defense was stout in the early goings of the game.

The Raiders came into the game ranking first in the NFL in rushing, and they mustered up just two first downs by way of the ground game, and had only 49 rushing yards on the night.

Here are some of the biggest takeaways for me from the Broncos’ third convincing victory of the 2013 season.

1. The Passing Game is Unstoppable

The Ravens couldn’t stop it (SEVEN TDs), the Giants couldn’t stop it, and the Raiders couldn’t stop it. I don’t think the Eagles will be able to stop it and I don’t foresee the Broncos having much trouble at all finding ways to move the ball through the air this season.

Peyton Manning is simply too good at this point, and not only is he playing at an elite level, he is playing at an unheard of level. He has set the NFL mark with 12 touchdowns through the first three games of the season, and hasn’t thrown a single interception. In fact, prior to his odd fumble on Monday night against the Raiders, Manning hasn’t really made any errors at all aside from maybe the occasional underthrow.

Those are few and far in between.

For the night, Manning was 32-of-37 for 374 yards and three touchdowns. Eric Decker went of for 8-133-1, Demaryius Thomas had 10-94, Wes Welker had 7-84-1, and Julius Thomas had 4-37-1. Honestly it doesn’t seem like anything is going to slow that unit down. It’s as good as Broncos fans could have possibly pictured it when the team signed Welker back in March.

2. The Running Game Lives

What a night it was for the Broncos’ running backs, which gave the Raiders a taste of their own medicine and ran buck wild Monday night.

The Broncos had one drive in particular led by Ronnie Hillman that was especially impressive, and the running game finished off the night with 164 yards on 35 carries and a one-yard touchdown run by Ronnie Hillman that gave the Broncos a 37-14 lead at the time.

Denver needed a confidence boosting game for the running backs, and they got it. Hillman had just nine carries, but finished with 66 yards. Rookie Montee Ball had a whack fumble late in the game that let the Raiders pad their stats a bit, but he finished with 62 yards on 11 carries. Knowshon Moreno added 39 yards and the Broncos had their running game flow going.

It was a pretty sight to see.

3. Maybe the Stat of the Night

I realize it’s not as impressive as Manning’s 12 touchdowns through three games to start the year, but the Broncos’ offensive line allowed one sack against the team that led the league in that category going into this week.

Chris Clark had really one miscue on the night when he let LaMarr Houston through the line of scrimmage to force a strip sack on Peyton Manning, but other than that, it was a great night for the offensive line, answering the call after losing captain Ryan Clady.

4. Not Worried About Pass D

The Broncos left some receivers open for Terrelle Pryor on Monday Night, but they weren’t about to let the Raiders QB run all over them.

As far as his scrambling is concerned, Pryor was held in check the entire game, including a designed quarterback run in the fourth quarter where he was absolutely blasted and later left with concussion symptoms. He had four carries for 36 yards, which led the Raiders.

The Broncos also allowed a touchdown on a Darren McFadden pass. Yep, the Raiders went there.

5. Robert Ayers Was Very Good

Robert Ayers has earned the nickname “Almost Ayers” by some Broncos fans, but ‘Almost’ made the most of his opportunities Monday night, finishing the game with two sacks, two tackles for loss, and three QB hits.

Injury Updates

Tony Carter and Duke Ihenacho left with ankle injuries, and right tackle Orlando Franklin had a shoulder injury. The severity of the injuries is not known at this point, but none is suspected to be serious.

Topics: Denver Broncos, Game Recap, Oakland Raiders

Want more from Predominantly Orange?  
Subscribe to FanSided Daily for your morning fix. Enter your email and stay in the know.
  • James K

    Yes the Broncos might look like the team to beat at this point, but they are not unstoppable. Should someone bring out the Superbowl Saints Defensive Playbook they might see ways to unravel even the most “Brainiac” of all Quarterbacks .
    And I for one believe ” As Goes Peyton, so Goes Denver”.
    IMHO from Oakland, Ca

    • http://blog.trwolfe.com T.R. Wolfe

      “Someone” being the keyword here. Who? Nice attempt at trying to cool off the Broncos’ success so far. Oakland!!!

      As for the game, LOVED that hit on Pryor! He won’t be doing that again anytime soon.

      • James K

        Nobody loves a helmet to helmet !
        Best of luck to your team down the road!
        See You in O-Town.
        Go Raiders!

  • sten swarty

    Monday night blow out? Don’t get too excited they only won by 16. Denver looks good, but lets not take this out of context. NYG obviously has their problems, What Flacco threw for only 57 yards week 3, and then you beat a some what of a rookie Oakland team. Don’t get excited Denver wait until you play a good team. Also Denver won by a 22 pt margin, then 19, now 16 so lets give some credit to those boys in Silver and Black for not being a Joke this year so far.