KUSA - While the Broncos defense was holding down Philip Rivers and San Diego, the Denver offense did what it's done best all season as Denver held a 14-0 lead at halftime Sunday.
The Broncos were looking to take a 21-0 lead just before halftime, but Peyton Manning's pass to Eric Decker in the end zone went off the receiver's chest and to the Chargers defense to end the threat.
Manning was 11-of-16 passing for 100 yards with two TDs and one interception in the first half, while Rivers was 5-of-8 for 20 yards.
The Broncos had 177 total yards to the Chargers 45. Montee Ball led Denver with 39 yards on seven carries, and Knowshown Moreno had 38 yards on 10 carries.
Denver opened the scoring with Manning's 2-yard pass to Demaryius Thomas to cap a 14-play, 86-yard drive that took just over 7 minutes. Then Wes Welker made his return known on a third-down touchdown pass in the second quarter for a 14-0 lead.
On the Chargers' first drive the Broncos stopped them on third-and-17, but a defensive facemask by Malik Jackson on Danny Woodhead keep drive going. Rivers was sacked twice in the drive and failed on the second third-and-long; they still ran nearly 5.5 minutes off clock before punting.
Decker was back for the return inside the 10-yard line and returned it to the Broncos' 14-yard line. Denver scored 14 plays later to take a 7-0 lead.
On their second drive after holding the Chargers to three-and-out, the Broncos gave back the ball after tight end Julius Thomas fumbled at the Chargers' 44-yard-line after making a catch. It was the Broncos' first lost fumble in the past six games.
But the Denver defense held strong again, sacking Rivers for the third time in the first half on third-and 3. Going for a career-long and with the wind at his back, Nick Novick missed a 53-yard field goal attempt was short and to the left with just over 11 minutes left in the half.