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Broncos get scare from Washington, rally for runaway win

Washington Redskins v Denver Broncos

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 27: Quarterback Peyton Manning #18 and wide receiver Wes Welker #83 of the Denver Broncos celebrate a touchdown by Welker during the first quarter against the Washington Redskins at Sports Authority Field Field at Mile High on October 27, 2013 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

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On the first play of the fourth quarter, the Broncos trailed Washington 21-14 and faced a 4th-and-goal from the Redskins’ one-yard-line.

The Broncos converted, with Peyton Manning throwing a TD pass to reserve tight end Joel Dreessen. It was the first of four touchdowns for Denver in a 31-point fourth quarter, one that propelled the Broncos a 45-21 victory.

The Broncos forced five fourth-quarter turnovers, with three committed by Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. On the second of his two fourth-quarter picks, Griffin suffered a left knee injury on a hit by Broncos defensive tackle Terrance Knighton. Griffin did not return to the game, but early reports suggest Griffin is fine.

The Broncos’ defense surrendered just 266 yards to Washington. Griffin didn’t play well before leaving, completing 15-of-30 passes for 132 yards and a touchdown. He was sacked three times.

Manning didn’t have his best game, either. He was picked three times, all in the second half. The first of those interceptions was returned for a score by Washington cornerback DeAngelo Hall, giving the Redskins a 21-7 lead with 11:25 left in the third quarter.

However, the Redskins’ offense couldn’t get anything going thereafter, and the Broncos’ offense eventually kicked into gear. So did the Denver defense, whose takeaways helped set up 10 second-half points. Overall, Denver would score 38 unanswered points to finish the game.

Aside from the picks, Manning was, well, Manning, completing 30-of-44 passes for 354 yards and four touchdowns. Wes Welker, Demaryius Thomas and Knowshon Moreno had TD catches for Denver, which is now 7-1 and has its bye next week.

The Redskins fell to 2-5. Washington hosts San Diego next Sunday.