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BRONCOS 34, RAIDERS 14
OAKLAND, Calif. • Peyton Manning set the NFL single-season record for yards passing and threw four first-half touchdown passes to help the Denver Broncos clinch the top seed in the AFC playoffs with a win over the Oakland Raiders.
Manning needed just one half to add the yards record to the touchdown mark he set last week and assure that the Broncos (13-3) won’t have to leave home again until the Super Bowl if they make it that far. He threw touchdown passes to Eric Decker and Knowshon Moreno in the first quarter and added two to Demaryius Thomas in the second quarter. He broke Drew Brees’ record of 5,476 yards set in 2011 with a 5-yard pass to Thomas with 13 seconds left in the half to make it 31-0.
That ended Manning’s day having completed 25 of 28 passes for 266 yards. He finished the season with 5,477 yards and 55 touchdown passes.
The Raiders (4-12) ended their 11th straight non-winning season with six straight losses and big questions about the future of second-year coach Dennis Allen.
SAINTS 42, BUCCANEERS 17
NEW ORLEANS • Drew Brees passed for four touchdowns and ran for another score, and New Orleans clinched a wild-card spot with a victory over Tampa Bay.
Three of Brees’ scoring strikes were longer than 40 yards — 76 to Kenny Stills, 44 to Lance Moore and 41 to Robert Meachem. Brees passed for 381 yards, eclipsing 5,000 yards in a season for an unprecedented fourth time. He finished the season with 5,162 yards to go with 39 touchdowns.
Brees’ other TD was a 10-yard pass to tight end Jimmy Graham, and the Saints (11-5) finished 8-0 in the Superdome.
Mike Glennon passed for 219 yards and two TDs for Tampa Bay (4-12). Second-year Tampa Bay coach Greg Schiano was fired on Monday.
CHARGERS 27, CHIEFS 24, OT
SAN DIEGO • Nick Novak kicked a 36-yard field goal with 5:30 left in overtime, ending the San Diego Chargers’ three-year playoff drought with a victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Chargers (9-7) needed help for weeks, and everything fell into place on Sunday, with the last piece being their win over a Chiefs team that already had clinched the AFC’s No. 5 seed and rested 20 of 22 starters.
The Chargers, who trailed by 10 points in the fourth quarter, held the Chiefs on downs to win it after they reached the San Diego 41.
Earlier in the day, the Chargers got the help they needed when Miami and Baltimore both lost. San Diego has won four straight and five of six heading into a wild-card game next weekend at AFC North champion Cincinnati.
The Chiefs (11-5) go into the playoffs having lost five of seven. They play at AFC South champion Indianapolis.
SEAHAWKS 27, RAMS 9
SEATTLE • Malcolm Smith returned an interception 37 yards for a touchdown, Marshawn Lynch added a 2-yard scoring run and the Seahawks clinched the NFC West title and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with a win over the St. Louis Rams.Next Page >
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