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2010 Season Review: Second Quarter

Posted Jan 17, 2011

DenverBroncos.com continues with the second in a four-part series looking back at the 2010 season.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- The Broncos dropped to the bottom of the AFC West with four straight losses heading into their bye week.

The skid started with a road loss at Baltimore and continued with a pair of home losses before a one-score defeat to San Francisco at London's Wembley Stadium left the team with a 2-6 record at the season's halfway point.

Ravens 31, Broncos 17

GAME RECAP: Baltimore scored the game's first 17 points and used a bruising rushing attack to grind down the Broncos in a 31-17 win at M&T Bank Field.

Kyle Orton hit Brandon Lloyd for a pair of 40-plus-yard touchdowns as part of the receiver's third straight 100-plus yard receiving performance, but the Ravens -- who ran the ball nearly twice as often as they passed -- rushed for 233 yards and four scores as a team.

Ray Rice became the first opposing player to top the 100-yard rushing mark against the Broncos, finishing with 133 yards and two touchdowns on 27 carries.

TURNING POINT: After taking possession midway through the third quarter, the Ravens ran the ball 11 times on a 14-play, 72-yard touchdown drive that chewed more than seven minutes off the game clock. Ray Rice's 1-yard touchdown plunge gave Baltimore a 24-7 lead with 14:21 left in the game.

KEY STATISTIC: The Ravens used a potent rushing attack to win the time of possession battle by nearly 13 minutes. The home team had the ball for at least 10 minutes in three different quarters. As a result, the Broncos defense was on the field for 73 plays in the game.

QUOTABLE: "They obviously did a lot better things than we did, played a lot tougher. We got our butts kicked pretty good today."
-Champ Bailey

Jets 24, Broncos 20

GAME RECAP: Matt Prater's field goal with 3:55 left gave the Broncos a three-point lead, but the Jets followed with an 80-yard touchdown drive to win the game.

On Orange Sunday at INVESCO Field at Mile High, LaDainian Tomlinson's 2-yard touchdown run with 1:13 proved the winning score in a 24-20 Jets victory.

The Broncos rushed for a then-season-high 145 yards and forced three New York turnovers to move into position for the home win. But the Jets struck last with a 10-play touchdown drive, buoyed by a 46-yard pass interference penalty on a 4th-and-6 play.

A pair of rookies accounted for the Broncos touchdowns. Demaryius Thomas caught a 17-yard scoring pass from Orton, and Tim Tebow found the end zone on a 5-yard run for his first NFL touchdown.

TURNING POINT: Up 20-17 with less than two minutes left, the Broncos needed a stop on 4th-and-6 to preserve the win. Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez heaved a deep pass down the left side for Santonio Holmes. The pass fell incomplete but Renaldo Hill was flagged for pass interference -- a 46-yard penalty that set the Jets up at the Broncos 2-yard line. A play later, Tomlinson scored the go-ahead touchdown, and the Broncos' final drive ended with a lost fumble in Jets territory.

KEY STATISTIC: In a largely statistically even contest, the Broncos won the turnover battle and outgained the Jets 346 yards-to-319 yards but came up short on the scoreboard.

QUOTABLE: "They made one more play than we did. That's how it happened. We just have to understand the situation in the game and come out and make those plays."
-Mario Haggan

Raiders 59, Broncos 14

GAME RECAP: The Broncos turned the ball over on their first two offensive plays from scrimmage as part of a disastrous performance in a 59-14 loss to Oakland.

The Raiders scored the game's first 38 points in less than 23 minutes of play en route to their largest offensive output in franchise history. Darren McFadden accounted for much of that damage finishing with 165 rushing yards, 31 receiving yards and four total touchdowns.

Knowshon Moreno scored a pair of receiving touchdowns in the loss.

TURNING POINT: After Oakland took an early lead on a 43-yard touchdown catch by Zach Miller, Orton and the Broncos offense took the field for the first time. The quarterback's first pass turned into an interception return for a touchdown for Oakland's Chris Johnson. When the Broncos offense took the field again, Thomas lost a fumble to set up another score for the visitors.

KEY STATISTIC: As a team, Oakland finished with 328 rushing yards on 52 attempts with five touchdowns. In allowing the season-high rushing total, the Broncos defense ceded 6.3 yards per carry.

QUOTABLE: "I am embarrassed, everybody is embarrassed, and we have a lot of work to do."
-Kyle Orton

49ers 24, Broncos 16

GAME RECAP: In an NFL International Series contest at London's Wembley Stadium, the Broncos gave up 21 fourth-quarter points to drop their fourth-straight game. Denver's first international regular season game ended in a 24-16 loss to San Francisco.

The Broncos tried to rally back after allowing three touchdowns in less than nine minutes of play. Orton hit Lloyd for a touchdown with 2:19 left to pull the team within four. But after Eddie Royal's apparent punt return for touchdown was called back by penalty, Denver's final drive ended with an interception.

Both teams got off to slow starts in the game, combining for just 10 points through three quarters. The only touchdown in that span came on Tebow's third-quarter touchdown run.

TURNING POINT: Down 24-16 with less than two minutes left, Orton began driving the offense toward a potential-tying score. But on second-and-10 from the San Francisco 45-yard line, 49ers cornerback Shawntae Spencer jumped in front of a pass for Jabar Gaffney for the game-sealing interception.

KEY STATISTIC: After allowing just 199 yards of total offense and three points through three quarters, the Broncos defense surrendered 140 yards and 21 points in the decisive final quarter.

QUOTABLE: "I thought it was an honor to play in Wembley Stadium. I think it was really cool. I love the fact that the support was strong, and it seems like the fans were very knowledgeable about what was going on out there on the football field, and I was surprised."
-Brandon Lloyd