DENVER - The Denver Broncos still have their troubles with the red zone and yellow flags. The dark cloud that hung over them during their month of misery, though, is gone.
Kyle Orton drove them on six scoring drives, Matt Prater kicked four field goals, and former Eagles safety Brian Dawkins led a ferocious defense 48 hours after calling a players-only meeting. The result was a 26-6 Denver win last night at Invesco Field at Mile High.
Elvis Dumervil dumped Eli Manning twice, extending his NFL-leading sack total to 14. Dumervil's second one came in the fourth quarter and resulted in a fumble that sealed Denver's first win since Oct. 19.
The Broncos returned to the physical style of play that marked their 6-0 start and ditched the sieve that was their defense during a four-game skid.
Behind three takeaways, the Broncos (7-4) halted their freefall and pulled within a half-game of AFC West leader San Diego.
New York (6-5), which ended its four-game losing streak on Sunday, fell two games behind Dallas in the NFC East. The Giants also fell a game behind Green Bay and a half-game behind the Eagles in the wild-card picture.
"We didn't have any tempo and we didn't make any plays," Giants coach Tom Coughlin said.
The Broncos outgained the Giants, 213-38, in the first half but settled for field goals on three drives.
That led to an embarrassing mistake by the NFL Network. A profanity yelled by Broncos coach Josh McDaniels could be heard on the telecast.
After reaching the 7, the Broncos settled for Prater's 22-yarder and a 3-0 lead.
Their second trip inside the Giants' 10-yard line turned into a game of flag football as tight end Daniel Graham, left tackle Ryan Clady, and center Casey Wiegmann were whistled for false starts, and the Broncos sent out Prater for a 32-yarder that made it 6-0.
Coming out of a commercial break after that second field goal, the NFL Network showed a clip of McDaniels yelling at his players on the sideline saying, "All we're trying to do is win a [expletive] game!"
The vulgarity was clearly audible to viewers, and announcer Bob Papa immediately apologized to them.