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Denver Broncos clinch home-field advantage in AFC

The Denver Broncos break records and win football games.

Both those traits were on display in a 34-14 drubbing of the Oakland Raiders on Sunday. The 13-3 Broncos finish as the AFC's No. 1 seed and will have home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs for the second straight year. We'll find out if they can take advantage of it this time.

Here's what we learned:

  1. Peyton Manning put the finishing touches on the greatest season a quarterback has ever had. Manning was especially clinical against an awful Raiders defense, finishing 25 of 28 for 266 yards and four touchdowns ... in one half. His final throw -- a 5-yard touchdown pass to DeMaryius Thomas with 13 seconds to play in the second quarter -- broke Drew Brees' single-season yardage total of 5,476 yards.
  1. Manning's final 2013 statistics through the air: 450 of 659 (68.3 percent), 5,477 yards, 55 touchdown passes, 10 interceptions, 115.1 passer rating. This is a line that might never be topped.
  1. The futures of Raiders coach Dennis Allen and general manager Reggie McKenzie remain very much up in the air. NFL Media columnist Michael Silver reported earlier Sunday that owner Mark Davis gave signals this week he was leaning toward keeping them in 2014. The caveat was that Davis could change his mind if the Raiders were embarrassed against the Broncos. Going into the half down 31-0 certainly qualifies as embarrassing. Stay tuned.
  1. Terrelle Pryor's agent thought his client was being set up to fail on Sunday. That thinking was roundly criticized from all sides, but Pryor still didn't do much with his opportunity. It's fair to wonder if Pryor will have a roster spot next season.
  1. One more bit of record-setting madness that deserves recognition: The Broncos finish the season with 606 points, breaking the previous record of 589 held by the 2007 New England Patriots. The Manning-Tom Brady rivalry exists on multiple levels.

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