By EDDIE PELLS
AP National Writer
DENVER (AP) – Peyton Manning is off and running. … All the way to the Super Bowl.
He has his defense to thank.
Cornerback Bradley Roby saved the game by picking off Tom Brady’s pass on a 2-point try with 12 seconds left to preserve a 20-18 victory for the Broncos over the Patriots Sunday in the AFC title game.
Denver (14-4) will face Arizona or Carolina for the title on Feb. 7.
New England had to go for 2 after Brady’s 4-yard touchdown to Rob Gronkowski because Stephen Gostkowski missed an extra point in the first quarter, snapping a string of 523 straight makes.
Manning threw two touchdowns but the 39-year-old QB’s best play may have very well been his 12-yard scramble on third down in the third quarter – his longest playoff run since he was a rookie.