DENVER – Peyton Manning is off and running. … All the way to the Super Bowl.
He has his defence to thank.
After 60 thrilling minutes of play against the defending NFL champion Patriots, the Broncos prevailed 20-18 to win the AFC Championship.
The combination of Peyton Manning and some outstanding defence proved to be too much for the Patriots, who got within two points of forcing overtime with 12 seconds remaining. Going for the two-point conversion Brady’s pass was deflected and the Broncos had the win.
Cornerback Bradley Roby saved the game by picking off Tom Brady’s pass on a 2-point try with 12 seconds left to preserve the victory.
Denver will now head to Santa Clara, California, for a date in the 50th Super Bowl against the winner of the NFC Championship game.
New England had to go for 2 after Brady’s 4-yard touchdown to Rob Gronkowski because Stephen Gostkowski missed an extra point in the first quarter, snapping a string of 523 straight makes.
Manning threw two touchdowns but the 39-year-old QB’s best play may have very well been his 12-yard scramble on third down in the third quarter – his longest playoff run since he was a rookie.