|Date of game: 11/25/2012
Recap: Kansas City vs. Denver
Kansas City, MO (Sports Network) - Peyton Manning tossed a pair of touchdown passes and the Denver Broncos held off the reeling Kansas City Chiefs, 17-9, at Arrowhead Stadium.
Manning overcame an early interception to complete 22-of-37 throws for 285 yards for the Broncos (8-3), winners of six straight games. Demaryius Thomas and Jacob Tamme each hauled in four passes and a score in the victory.
Knowshon Moreno, who hadn't seen game action since Week 2, handled the bulk of the rushing attempts in Willis McGahee's absence. He rushed for 85 yards on 20 carries for the game.
"He's had a great attitude," said Broncos coach John Fox about Moreno. "Things haven't gone perfect for him, but I knew he would perform well, I think his teammates knew he'd perform well and he did. We're proud of his effort."
McGahee was placed on injured reserve earlier in the week after tearing the MCL in his right knee in last Sunday's win over San Diego.
While Kansas City (1-10) played well defensively, the offense continued to struggle, as the Chiefs were unable to find the end zone all day in dropping their eighth straight contest. For the first time since 1976, the Chiefs have lost their first six home games.
"We're disappointed in the outcome, but I thought the guys played a good football game," said Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel. "By a long shot we were not perfect, but we still were in the game until the end."
Brady Quinn got the start at quarterback and was only able to throw for 126 yards on 13-of-25 efficiency. On a desperation heave, he was intercepted on the final play of the game.
Jamaal Charles paced the Kansas City rushing attack, finishing with 107 yards on 23 carries in the setback.
The Chiefs, who have infamously played from behind most of the season, actually got out to the early advantage thanks to a pair of Ryan Succop field goals on Kansas City's first two touches.
A 19-yard dash by Dexter McCluster led to Succop's first kick, a 34-yard boot, before they added three more following a 20-yard punt return by Javier Arenas. Tony Moeaki's 19-yard catch-and-run then helped set up Succop for 22-yard kick to open up a 6-0 lead for the Chiefs.
Trindon Holliday returned the ensuing kickoff 50 yards the Broncos, giving them a chance to cut their deficit in half late in first quarter, but Matt Prater's 47-yard kick drifted wide right.
Manning made a poor decision on Denver's next touch early in the second quarter. He overthrew Decker, who was in double-coverage, on a ball deep down the field, allowing Brandon Flowers to come away with interception for Kansas City.
Denver blundered defensively on a 4th-and-1, as Kevin Vickerson was called for a neutral zone infraction, giving Kansas City a new set of downs. The Chiefs pushed the ball to the Denver 33 but were forced to punt after Quinn took a 9- yard sack to take them out of field-goal range.
Manning then marched the Broncos 94 yards down the field for a score just before halftime. He hooked up with Brandon Stokley for a 31-yard completion early in the drive to cross midfield. After taking a sack, he then fired a 22- yard strike to Tamme inside the Chiefs' 10 before finding him again over the middle for a 7-yard touchdown, giving Denver a 7-6 edge at the midway point.
In the third, after Thomas couldn't haul in a reception on a diving attempt, the Broncos were forced to settle for three. However, for the second time on the day, Prater could not put his kick through, as he drove his 33-yard attempt right into the left upright.
The Chiefs were able to regain the lead midway through the quarter on Succop's third kick of the day, this one from 49 yards out. Charles had a pair of 11- yard rushes and 30 yards total on the drive to help set Kansas City up in field goal range.
But Manning didn't let the Chiefs keep the advantage for long, as he launched a 30-yard beauty down the sideline to Thomas for a score on the ensuing possession. On the play prior, Denver was able to convert on third down thanks to a 12-yard catch by Tamme.
Both teams stepped it up defensively in final period as neither could get anything going offensively until the Broncos scored late in the quarter.
Kansas City got the ball back on its own 50 yard-line after pinning Denver on its own 2, but couldn't do anything with the good field position and punted back to the Broncos with 6:24 remaining.
The Chiefs didn't see the ball again until there were just 14 seconds left, as the Broncos drove 68 yards on 12 plays to get Prater into field-goal range.
After missing his first two kicks, Prater sent the 34-yard attempt through the uprights to give Denver an eight-point lead, leaving little time for Kansas City to respond.
On the final play of the game, Quinn launched a deep ball for Dwayne Bowe, but David Bruton picked it off to secure the victory.Game Notes
Manning won his 149th career game, passing John Elway for 2nd-most all-time
... Manning also surpassed Dan Marino for 2nd-most seasons with at least 3,000
yards passing, accomplishing the feat for the 14th time ... Denver has won
seven of the last 11 contests against Kansas City.