Broncos Banged Up Heading Into Oakland for Thursday Night Game

December 5, 2012 10:00 AM

Broncos Banged Up Heading Into Oakland for Thursday Night Game
By Ruch Kurtzman

" When the Broncos meet up with the Raiders in Oakland Thursday, it could result in the most lopsided football game of the year. Denver possesses all-time great Peyton Manning and the No. 3 scoring team in all of football. Couple that with the Raiders’ league-worst scoring defense, allowing 31.3 points per game, and the Broncos could go “beastmode.”

(Credit, Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

But two of the men Manning will likely be throwing the ball to are injured, and their ability to play Thursday night is in jeopardy.

Brandon Stokley, who has built not only a working relationship but an off-the-field friendship with Manning over the years, sat out Sunday’s game with a bum hip. Stokley is Manning’s go-to guy when the offense must have a first down. Denver struggled without him in the slot for much of the first half.

In his place was Matt Willis, a fifth-year wideout that has contributed sparingly this season, hauling in eight footballs for 66 yards. He caught three of those last week in Stokley’s stead, and would be the most likely receiver to fill his void again Thursday "

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