WOLFE MISSES MOST OF GAME
Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe left Sunday’s game in the second quarter with a neck injury and did not return. It’s the second time this season Wolfe has suffered a neck injury. The first was in the opener against Carolina and did not cause him to miss any games.
After the game, Wolfe said Sunday’s injury was similar but more painful. He compared it to a really bad stinger. The pain originated in his shoulder and led to his neck.
Wolfe said his neck/shoulder was inflamed and it kept getting worse every time he tried to return. He said it’s an annoying recurrence, but he did not plan on missing any time. He will be re-evaluated Monday.
Broncos tight end Virgil Green took a hard hit after a first-quarter reception before leaving the game with a concussion.
Linebacker Todd Davis played most of the game despite an oblique injury that forced him to sit out practice until Friday. Davis and linebacker Corey Nelson played one of their best games against the Patriots’ shifty running backs and receivers.
“It’s playoff football,” Davis said. “I’ve got to be out there.”
WRs hit 1K.
Demaryius Thomas had 91 yards receiving on seven receptions and Emmanuel Sanders added 48 yards on three catches, pushing both over the 1,000-yard mark for the third consecutive season. Rod Smith and Ed McCaffrey (1998-2000) had been the only tandem in team history to have three consecutive 1,000-yard seasons.
Coach Gary Kubiak explained his reasoning for not using a timeout late in the first half when New England was punting from its 48 with just over a minute left: “We were concerned that we might be backed up because of where they were. They had two timeouts and we were getting the ball coming out of the second half. We were moving the ball extremely well and we were in a one-possession game. We definitely didn’t want to give it back to them. That was the thought process.”
Among the surprises on the Broncos’ inactive list vs. New England were wide receiver/punt returner Kalif Raymond and offensive lineman Ty Sambrailo. Guard Billy Turner was active for the first time in his career as a Bronco.
Coloradan up front.
The game was a homecoming for Patriots left offensive tackle Nate Solder, from Buena Vista and the University of Colorado. He worked most of the afternoon against DeMarcus Ware.
“The defense played good, and the special teams played good,” Solder said. “We were able to convert on some third downs and hold on to the ball. I thought those were some of the biggest plays of the game.”
Denver kicker Brandon McManus reached 300 career points in his 45th game, the sixth-fastest man to reach that mark in team history. Jason Elam is first, reaching the milestone in 39 games. … The Broncos wore their blue alternate jerseys with white pants, an ensemble that previously helped them to wins over the Texans this season and the Packers last season. … Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller wore custom fur cleats made by Adidas for pregame warm-ups.