Final Score: Lightning 45, Refs 25, Broncos 21, Seahawks 16

Last updated: Aug 22, 2014 1:27 PM

Ahh, nothing like a four-hour game to kick off the preseason, amirite?!

The Broncos defeated the visiting Seahawks 21-16 (Gamebookhighlights) in a game delayed 45 minutes by lightning, and an indeterminate amount of time by 25 accepted penalties.

Of course, it also wouldn’t be preseason without a new undrafted running back darling. Former Dukie Juwan Thompson racked up 59 yards on six carries, showing as much speed, vision, and toughness as one can show in a matchup of second-team units.

Denver opened the game in familiar fashion - a first down gained by Demaryius Thomas (video), and a whole lot of nothing gained by Ronnie Hillman.

Seattle’s first drive was thwarted by a DeMarcus Ware sack of Russell Wilson and near-interception by Rahim Moore.

The Broncos then took advantage of some good field position and overcame a slew of penalties to craft a 14-play, 61-yard touchdown drive. On the possession, Thomas caught four more passes from Peyton Manning, and Hillman punched it in from a yard out (video).

Following Matt Prater’s 33-yard extra point conversion, lightning in the area delayed the game for a whopping 45 minutes.

When play finally resumed, Seattle responded with a penalty-ridden 14-play touchdown drive of its own. Four flags against Denver provided automatic first downs, and Christine Michael tallied a one-yard score.

The Broncos’ second-team offense took over from there, with Brock Osweiler mostly handing off to C.J. Anderson and Juwan Thompson. Unfortunately, Anderson suffered a concussion on a short reception. Denver’s drive stalled at the 36, and Matt Prater hooked his knuckling attempt wide left.

Tarvaris Jackson and the Seahawks took advantage of the prime field position, and Steven Hauschka’s own wobbler was good from 41.

More than two hours after the opening kickoff, Seattle took a 10-7 lead into halftime.

Marvin Austin ended the Seahawks’ first second-half drive with a 10-yard sack of Jackson, and Jordan Norwood followed with a nifty 20-yard punt return.

Again, the refs took center stage, as Denver’s next possession featured more flags (six) than plays (five).

Thompson and Kapri Bibbs accounted for most of the 57-yard touchdown drive, with Bibbs scoring from three yards (video) after Thompson’s injury forced him out (he was cleared to return after a concussion test).

Denver’s 14-10 advantage didn’t last all that long, as Terrelle Pryor & Co. responded with a 58-yard drive and 40-yard FG from Hauschka, which made it 14-13.

After an ugly punt by Britton Colquitt and a worse interception by Osweiler, the Seahawks started the fourth quarter at the Denver 24.

Six plays later, Hauschka chipped through a 24-yarder, giving Seattle a short-lived 16-14 edge.

Osweiler responded with an 80-yard scoring drive, throwing for 65 yards and running for another 19 along the way (Brennan Clay lost the other four yards on a single carry).

Brock polished off the possession with a gorgeous 34-yard strike to Jordan Norwood (video), giving the Broncos their final 21-16 advantage.

Pryor got Seattle down to the three-yard line, but his third-and-goal throw was tipped by Jordan Sullen into the hands of Steven Johnson, who brought the ball out to the 27 (video).

From there, Clay and Osweiler ran/knelt out the clock on Denver’s preseason win.

Key Numbers

  • Peyton Manning was a crisp 10/13 for 78 yards, while Osweiler was an up-and-down 6/12 for 85 yards, one score, and a pick
  • Ronnie Hillman had just 15 yards on six carries, but one of them went for Denver's first touchdown
  • Demaryius Thomas finished with five catches for 52 yards
  • DeMarcus Ware, T.J. Ward (video), and Marvin Austin each had a sack
  • Denver was a tidy 8/12 on third downs, while holding Seattle to 3/11
  • Those 25 accepted penalties covered 226 yards


Videos: John Fox, Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas, Ronnie HillmanMarvin Austin, and several others speak after the game; BTV discusses the starting offense, DeMarcus Ware, and the rookie backs, plus a tribute to Brian Griese.

Here's a summary of Manning's comments, plus some of what Ware and Bradley Roby had to say.

IAOFM: Ted's Live Blog, and TJ's Gut Reactions.

Mike Klis, Andrew Mason, Arnie StapletonJeff Legwold, and Kalyn Kahler recap the game; Klis revisits his five pregame keys.

Lindsay Jones evaluates the debuts of Denver's big free-agent additions; Joan Niesen on DeMarcus Ware's impact.

Andrew Mason and Jeff Legwold discuss the contributions of DeMarcus WareBrock Osweiler, and Juwan Thompson.

Paul Klee is glad to see the Broncos are still Peyton's team.

Mark Kiszla reacts to the multitude of flags in brutish/sexist fashion. What does he think, this is the 1980s or something?

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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