OAKLAND, Calif. -- With one sterling half, Peyton Manning accomplished all he needed to in the regular-season finale by seizing another prestigious record and home-field advantage in the playoffs.
He knows his next time out probably won't be so easy.
Manning set the NFL single-season record for yards passing and threw four first-half touchdown passes to clinch the top seed in the AFC playoffs for the Broncos with a 34-14 victory over Oakland yesterday.
"We needed this win. We needed to improve on some things," Manning said. "The coaches challenged us in a couple of areas and I think we responded to those challenges."
The Broncos (13-3) built a 31-0 halftime lead before coach John Fox gave Manning and some other regulars the second half off to rest for the first playoff game two weeks from now in Denver.
Manning broke Drew Brees' record of 5,476 yards set in 2011 with a 5-yard pass to Demaryius Thomas (two TDs) with 13 seconds left in the half to make it 31-0. That ended Manning's day, having completed 25 of 28 passes for 266 yards. He finished the season with 5,477 yards and 55 touchdown passes.
The Raiders (4-12) ended their 11th straight nonwinning season with six consecutive losses. -- AP