||51 car. 208 yards (4.1 ypc)||36 car. 185 yards (5.1 ypc)|
|3rd Down Conversions||5-16||6-17|
The Broncos don't win easy, but they sure do "win exciting". It took 4 quarters plus 14 and a half minutes of overtime for the Broncos to put the final dagger into the heart of the San Diego Chargers. With so many ups and downs, this post-game report could get a bit lengthy.
The game started with what looked to be a miserable defensive drive for the Broncos. Ryan Mathews was running rampant through gaping holes in the defensive line, but as the Chargers entered Broncos territory, the defense stiffened. The Chargers settled for a field goal.
The Broncos offense, on the other hand, struggled to string a drive together. They had some decent gains on the ground thanks to Willis McGahee, but after some 3rd down failures (including a pass low and away to Demaryius Thomas, a drop on 3rd down by Eddie Royal and a missed personal foul when Tim Tebow was having his facemask ripped off) the Broncos struggled to sustain drives. The Chargers took over and Philip Rivers connected with Antonio Gates for a touchdown midway through the second quarter.
Both teams struggled to move the ball until Eddie Royal set up the Broncos with good field position after a 31 yard return into Chargers territory. Tim Tebow connected with Daniel Fells for 19 yards, who promptly fumbled the ball which was then corralled by Orlando Franklin. The drive continued. Tim Tebow capped off the drive with a beautiful 18 yard pass to Eric Decker up the left seam after a pump fake to the left.The momentum was clearly on the Broncos side going into halftime, but after the Broncos received the kickoff, they were forced into a 3 and out after Jeremiah Johnson dropped a quick slant that would have gone for a first down plus some. The Broncos punted and the Chargers rumbled down the field for yet another field goal. The Broncos still trailed by only 6 points, so the game was still well within reach.
After swapping punts, the Broncos took over and began to drive down the field. On 3rd and 5 from the Chargers 42 yard line, Tebow dropped back and waited for what seemed like an eternity and then threaded the needle to Matt Willis for a gain of 14. Despite the momentum, the Chargers defense stiffened and the Broncos settled for a field goal. The Broncos trailed 10-13 at the end of the 3rd quarter.
The Chargers started yet another long drive as Ryan Mathews broke a long run down the right sideline, with Vincent Jackson creating a seal with a huge block on Quinton Carter. The Hines Ward rule was unenforced and the Chargers kicked a 48 yard field goal that sailed wide right. The score remained 10-13.
The Broncos drove down the field again, but the drive stalled as Tebow ran for a 3rd down conversion and it was called back for a JD Walton holding penalty. The next play, Paul Oliver pushed off on Eric Decker, but the referree failed to call a pass interference penalty. The Broncos punted.
After a quick first down to Vincent Jackson, the Chargers took over around the 30 yard line. Von Miller came off the edge with a beautiful spin move that resulted in a timely sack for the Denver defense. The next play, Brian Dawkins came up the middle and hit Rivers as he threw, forcing the Chargers to punt on 4th down.
The Broncos took over at their own 26 yard line, still down 3 points, with 5:27 left in the game. After two quick runs for no gain, Tim Tebow laid it up for Eric Decker who came down with a brilliant diving catch at the Chargers 36 yard line. The Chargers challenged the completion, but there was no denying the greatness of this catch. Another Willis McGahee run for no gain forced a 2nd and 9. Tebow threw a beautiful pass down the right sideline over an outstretched Charger hand to Dante Rosario. With the Chargers stuffing yet another McGahee rush up the middle, the Broncos let the clock run to the 2 minute warning. The Chargers pass defense showed up on 2nd down and Tim Tebow threw the ball away as he rolled to the left, which brought up a critical 3rd down and 8. He spun and juked, but came up short, gaining only . The Broncos settled for a field goal to tie the game at 13.
With 1:34 on the game clock, Philip Rivers went back to work at the Charger 25 yard line after a 5 yard penalty was added to the touchback, thanks to a David Bruton offsides. The Chargers dinked and dunked at theirown 40 yard line with 1:08 on the clock and ran out of bounds to stop the clock. The next play, Elvis Dumervil came up with a huge 10 yard sack on 1st down. A draw and a short pass play indicated their willingness to run out the clock, but John Fox and company refused to take a timeout to give the offense time to function. Sudden death overtime.
The Broncos won the coin toss and elected to receive. The Broncos offense took over at their own 20 yard line. McGahee ran up the middle for 16 yards across the 36 yard line. After a short Tebow run to the left and a short McGahee run to the right, the Broncos faced a 3rd and 2 from their own 44 yard line. Tebow gained only one.
John Fox decides to punt the football and the Broncos pinned the Broncos at their own 8. Ryan Mathews matched McGahee's 16 yard OT run with a 16 yarder of his own. After a 1st down run for 1 yard and an incompletion as he was flushed to the right on second down, the Chargers faced a 3rd and 9 from their own 25. This became a 3rd and 14 from the 20 as Philip Rivers was called for a delay of game penalty. With a slot right, Rivers' arm was hit as he threw by a ferocious Von Miller off the right tackle. The ball fell harmlessly to the turf and the Chargers punted it right back to Eddie Royal at the Broncos 30 yard line.
After a run for no gain and an incompletion, Tim tebow threw a quick slant to Jeremiah Johnson (the same route that Johnson dropped earlier in the game) which was ruled as a first down. The placement on the ball was reviewed and ruled to be just short of the first down. 4th and a half a yard.
The Broncos punt again with 9 minutes left in overtime.
The Chargers throw a quick 11 yard pass to move the ball out over the 30 yard line. After a short pass and a short run, yet another critical 3rd down arose. 3rd and 4 from the Charger 37 yard line. The Broncos called the first of their two timeouts after getting an offensive look that they weren't particularly happy with. It didn't seem to help as Antonio Gates caught a 5 yard pass in front of Chris Harris. A few plays later Von Miller jumped offsides and gave the Chargers a 2nd and 2 at midfield. Ryan Matthews broke free and Brian Dawkins wrestled him down at the 35.
The Chargers reached the magical red line that CBS indicates to be field goal range and continued down to the 35, but Von Miller snuck through for a 4 yard loss on 3rd down to push the Chargers back for a 53 yard attempt on 4th down.
Marcus Thomas blocked the field goal, but a timeout was called by Denver and the Chargers got another shot at it. Nick Novak missed it.
The Broncos took over at their own 43 yard line. He ran for a first down to the right sideline, out of bounds at the Charger 45 yard line. The next play, Tebow called his own number again and rumbled down to the 41 yard line.
Then Willis McGahee took over and pounded his way through the line and deep into the Charger secondary, down at the 17 yard line. Tebow centered the ball for Matt Prater on 1st down and 10. On 2nd and 12, the field goal unit came onto the field with 33 seconds left in overtime.
Prater kicked a 37 yard field goal to win the game.
The Broncos are 6-5. Neither team gave up a turnover. The Chargers haven't won a game in November and the Broncos haven't lost a game in November.