Dec 12, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) reacts during the second half against the San Diego Chargers at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Chargers won 27-20. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
KUSA - Despite the loss Thursday night to San Diego, Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning moved up on the single-season touchdown passes list and is alone in fourth place.
Manning threw two TD passes Thursday to seldom-used receiver Andre Caldwell and has 47 for the season. Manning needs three in the final two games to tie Tom Brady, who set the record in 2007 with 50.
Manning already held the this record once. He had 49 TD passes in 2004 to break the previous record of 48 set by Miami legend Dan Marino in 1984.
The season Manning had 49, he spread it among six players: Marvin Harrison (14), Reggie Wayne (11), Brandon Stokley (10) Marcus Pollard (six), Dallas Clark (five) and James Mungro (three).
During Thursday's game, Manning set a new personal best for passing yards in a season. He now has 4,811 yards, topping his previous best of 4,700 in 2010.
"I wouldn't say there were any surprises," Manning said. "I thought they executed well on defense and made more plays than we did."
He still has a shot at the NFL single-season record, held by New Orleans' Drew Brees with 5,476 in 2011. Manning needs to average 333 yards in the last two games.
FEELING THE PAIN: Wes Welker did not play after sustaining another concussion last week against Tennessee. He sustained a concussion earlier this season in Nov. 17 against Kansas City but was cleared to play the next Sunday against New England.
"Hey, Wes is a great player. We certainly knew it was going to be a challenge without him, Manning said. "But I thought guys were ready for that challenge, so I don't think it was a reason we didn't play as well on offense. We just weren't as sharp as we needed to be."
Cornerback Champ Bailey was also was inactive. He continues to recover from a preseason foot injury, and the Broncos are trying to get him rested for the playoffs. Earlier this week, coach John Fox said perhaps they brought back Bailey too soon.
"We've dealt with injuries all year," Broncos coach John Fox said, "and fortunately we're 11-3, and we did better 11 of the times than three of the times."
FIRST LOSS: Manning drops to 10-1 vs. the AFC West since join Denver last season with 30 touchdowns and just seven interceptions. He is 29-10 overall against the division, including 7-4 against the Chargers.
KUSA - Despite the loss Thursday night to San Diego, Denver Broncos quarterback Petyon Manning moved up on the single-season touchdown passes list and is alone in fourth place. Manning threw two TD passes Thursday to seldom-used receiver Andre Caldwell a