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DAVIS' NICKELS AND DIMES ADD UP TO BIG PAYDAY

Since 1983, the Denver Broncos have been the John Elway Show, but now running back Terrell Davis is taking over as the headline act.

The third-year running back was the dominant player Sunday in the Broncos's 23-20 overtime victory over the Bills, registering the first 200-yard rushing game ever against Buffalo.

Davis, who will turn 25 Tuesday, carried 42 times for 207 yards, including a 9-yard touchdown run. He was over 100 yards before halftime in the 16th 100-yard performance of his career. He had 21 carries for 124 yards in the first half and another 21 for 83 yards in the second half and overtime.

Davis also caught five passes for 29 yards, including 25 on a key play on the drive that produced Denver's only offensive touchdown.

Funny thing is, it didn't feel like a dominant performance to Davis.

"It felt like I was nickel and diming all day," Davis said. "I would get 2 yards on one play and stopped for no yards on the next. I never broke away for a big gain. So it didn't feel like a 200-yard day."

Davis' longest run was for 29 yards.

"I knew I had a lot of carries. I was counting 51 . . . 52 . . . 53," he joked. "After each play, I would get up and look at the (yard) marker and it was always second-and-10 and second-and-9. That's what it seemed."

With 1,068 yards after eight games, Davis is on pace for a 2,000-yard season.

"Ask me that in the 16th week of the season," he said. "It's going to fluctuate from week to week. Last week (against Oakland) I had 85 yards, today I had 200. It's not something I'm personally shooting for."

With Davis pounding the ball at them, the Bills defenders wore down late in the first half when Denver put together an 11-play, 74-yard drive, which mainly featured Davis running and catching. Denver had the ball 20:54 of the first 30 minutes.

In the second half, though, Denver went three-and-out on five of its seven possessions as the Bills, trailing 20-0, began playing desperate defense while Denver got conservative as the lead grew and the wind and rain picked up.

"You play offense different when you're protecting a lead and they started taking the running game away," Elway said of the difference between Denver's first-half and second-half output.

"They did not have a whole lot to lose, down 20-0, and they started coming after us," Elway said. "We knew it was going to be a dog fight coming in here. The dog fight went a little bit different than we planned on. It was 20-0 but we weren't playing very well offensively."

The score went to 20-0 when defensive tackle Keith Traylor intercepted a screen pass by Todd Collins and lumbered 62 yards to the end zone. Collins had a shot to trip up the 315-pound tackle, but Traylor escaped with a nifty high-step.

"At first I didn't think I was going to get there," said Traylor, who came back to Denver, his original NFL team, as free-agent signee from the Kansas City Chiefs. "You knew he (Collins) wasn't going to hit me high. When I saw him starting to dive, I pulled my inside foot away."

The Bills rallied and forced overtime on Steve Christie's 55-yard field goal with two seconds left in regulation. Denver coach Mike Shanahan thought the attempt had a good shot of succeeding.

"The wind was blowing very strong in that direction at the time and Christie's a great kicker so I knew the length was going to be there," Shanahan said. "I was just hoping the accuracy might be a little bit off."

It wasn't, however, and Denver needed Jason Elam's 33-yard field goal with 1:56 left in overtime.

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