In the much anticipated debut of Peyton Manning under center for Denver, the Broncos dominated the Bears in a convincing 31-3 win last night in Chicago. Manning engineered an 11-play, 60-yard opening drive into the red zone, that ended on a tipped-pass interception. The drive was Manning’s only action of the game.

After the interception, the Bears offense, led by quarterback Jason Campbell — Jay Cutler didn’t play — made it out to its own 30-yard line thanks to two Broncos penalties and two 1-yard Michael Bush runs. But when Campbell handed off to Bush a third time, the veteran running back fumbled the ball. Linebacker Von Miller picked it up off a bounce and sprinted all the way to the 6-yard line before being tripped up.

Quarterback Caleb Hanie and the second unit were in for the offense’s second drive of the game, which resulted in a 28-yard Matt Prater field goal to give Denver a 3-0 lead that the team never relinquished.

The rest of the first half belonged to Denver, as Chicago’s next three drives were three-and-outs, highlighted by rookie Derek Wolfe’s first career sack, a big hit in the backfield by linebacker Nate Irving and a sack by defensive end Robert Ayers.

At halftime, the Broncos had outgained the Bears 177 yards to 41, and Chicago’s Jason Campbell called Denver’s defense “tremendous.”

Rookie quarterback Brock Osweiler put together a pair of scoring drives in the third quarter — one capped off by a 3-yard touchdown run by Xavier Omon, and the second with a 19-yard touchdown strike from the rookie to wide receiver Jason Hill to give Denver a 24-0 lead.

Quarterback Adam Weber closed the game in the fourth quarter with the team’s fourth touchdown — a 25-yard hookup with Ingram to cement the final score, 31-3.

Even though the Broncos outgained the Bears by more than 200 yards and won the time of possession battle by more than seven minutes, the team knows it has plenty to work on.

“It’s a good first start, a good first outing,” Broncos head coach John Fox  said. “It’s what we do from it from here on that’s going to count.”

Tickets are available for the Broncos’ next preseason home game at Sports Authority Field vs. the Seattle Seahawks on August 18th, and can be purchased by calling (720) 258-3333, or by clicking here.

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