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NFL notes: Broncos take over top spot; Hawks drop to fifth


As he nears yet another milestone, Peyton Manning has the Denver Broncos back as the top team in the NFL.

Denver received eight first-place votes Tuesday for the AP Pro32 power rankings, which are decided by a 12-member media panel that regularly covers the league.

Manning threw three touchdown passes in a 31-17 win Sunday over the New York Jets and is two touchdown passes shy of Brett Favre’s record of 508 regular-season TD throws. Manning can set the mark Sunday night against the San Francisco 49ers.

“Peyton creeps ever closer to Brett Favre’s record of 508 career TDs with three more against the Jets,” Newsday’s Bob Glauber said. “Three to go for another slice of history for the great one.”

San Diego, which moved to 5-1 after rallying past the winless Oakland Raiders 31-28, moved up a spot to No. 2 and received three first-place votes.

The Broncos and Chargers will meet for the first time this season on Thursday, Oct. 23.

“(Philip) Rivers ready for Peyton showdown,” Fox Sports’ John Czarnecki said.

After facing San Diego, Manning will travel to Foxborough, Massachusetts, to take on Tom Brady and the New England Patriots on Nov. 2.

The surging Dallas Cowboys (5-1), who have won five in a row and are tied for first in the NFC East with the Philadelphia Eagles, are third and received the other first-place vote.

The Eagles stayed in fourth place after their 27-0 rout of division rival New York Giants.

The Seattle Seahawks dropped from No. 1 to No. 5 after their 30-23 loss to the Cowboys.

At least he smells good

Cowboys running back Joseph Randle was arrested after taking underwear and cologne from a mall department store without paying, police in a Dallas suburb said.

Randle, who is charged with a Class B misdemeanor theft between $50 and $500, was detained Monday evening by store security and later taken to the city jail before posting bond early Tuesday.

The arrest came a day after one of Randle’s best games since joining Dallas as a fifth-round draft pick out of Oklahoma State last season. He had a 38-yard run and a key tackle on a kickoff in a 30-23 victory over Super Bowl champion Seattle.

Randle finished with 52 yards rushing on five carries.

Around the league

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and players’ union chief DeMaurice Smith have agreed to continue discussing changes to the league’s personal conduct policy following a four-hour session in New York. In an email to player representatives afterward, Smith says he made it clear to the league that the union wants due process. … The 49ers have re-signed reserve QB Josh Johnson. … The Browns placed DE Armonty Bryant on IR and signed DL Sione Fua. … The Bengals placed WR Marvin Jones on IR and signed former Browns WR Greg Little.

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