Poisonous messages laced the Broncos' insatiable quest for peak performance.

The toxins first leaked in from the wise guys in Las Vegas who made the Broncos a whopping 26 ½-point favorites on gameday.

The given was the Broncos would beat the Jacksonville Jaguars. The question was at what point in the game the Broncos would cover.

The Broncos did win. Even if they may have played one of their worst games and Jacksonville played one of its best the Broncos had enough margin for error to prevail 35-19 on a perfectly cool fall afternoon Sunday at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

But they didn't win.

Peyton Manning threw two early touchdown passes to set another NFL record and Knowshon Moreno set a personal record with three second-half touchdown runs.

The Broncos improved to 6-0 as expected. The Jaguars fell to 0-6 as every breathing human presumed. What surprised many however was the Broncos had to sweat. Far as the gamblers who took Jacksonville and the points are concerned the Broncos got whipped.

Do you believe in gimmes?


Not in the NFL. The Broncos entered this game with a 5-0 record averaging 46.0 points a game. Jacksonville was 0-5 having scored 51 points all year.

The virus attacking the Broncos ability to execute spread during the week with the conversation from the left side of the radio dial to the right. There was so much chatter as to what point Peyton Manning would be pulled with victory assured.

The odds were stacked against the Broncos funny enough in their quest to play their best game.

Whenever supposed mismatches become competitive though turnovers committed by the heavy favorite are usually a factor. Manning gave the Jaguars six points on a pick six and lost two fumbles on the snap exchange with center Manny Ramirez.

Midway through the third quarter when there were projections of Manning's departure the Broncos were only up 21-19.