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Associated Press
Denver receiver Wes Welker hands the ball to back judge Tony Steratore after catching a touchdown pass against Oakland on Monday night.

Manning, Broncos cruise again

QB has thrown record 12 TDs through 3 games

– Peyton Manning threw for 374 yards and three touchdowns Monday to lift the Denver Broncos to another easy victory, 37-21 over the Oakland Raiders.

The Broncos (3-0) have outscored opponents 127-71 this season.

Manning hit Eric Decker, Wes Welker and Julius Thomas for a score apiece.

The quarterback’s 12 TD passes are an NFL record for the opening three games, breaking Tom Brady’s mark of 11 in 2011. Manning has yet to throw an interception this year.

Oakland’s Terrelle Pryor finished 19 for 28 for 281 yards as the Raiders played catch-up from the start. Oakland (1-2) trailed 17-0 before Pryor hit Denarius Moore for a 73-yard score.

Four plays later, Manning connected with Thomas for a 13-yard score to push the lead back to 17.

Manning was brought down hard when Lamarr Houston beat new left tackle Chris Clark around the corner in the third. Manning fumbled the ball, which was recovered by the Raiders, but quickly popped up, drawing a cheer from the crowd.

Clark has drawn the assignment of protecting Manning’s blindside with Ryan Clady sidelined for the season with a left foot injury. He also had a holding call earlier in the game, saving a potential sack of Manning.

The Raiders struggled from the start with three straight three-and-out possessions.

Oakland’s defense was missing linebacker Sio Moore, who sustained a concussion in an auto accident over the weekend.

The Broncos also were without linebacker Von Miller (suspension) and cornerback Champ Bailey, who returned to practice last week and warmed up before the game.

The Raiders-Broncos game marked a record 17th Monday night meeting between the longtime rivals.

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