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Determined Davis Leads Broncos

January 11, 1998

PITTSBURGH (AP) _ Stuffed on the ground in their first visit to Three Rivers Stadium, the Denver Broncos were stubbornly determined to prove they could run the ball against the NFL’s best rushing defense.

From Terrell Davis’ 43-yard run with his first carry of the game to his 19-yarder in the final minute that iced the game, the Broncos kept pounding at the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Davis ran for 139 yards and a touchdown Sunday, becoming the first back to rush for 100 yards against the Steelers since New England’s Curtis Martin did it in the playoffs last year, and the Broncos prevailed 24-21 in the AFC championship game.

``We like to think we have an NFC-style running game,″ Davis said. ``When I’m running well and the fullback and the line are blocking, we’re unstoppable.″

So the Broncos will head to San Diego, Davis’ home town, where they will try to prove their running attack, after three Super Bowl failures in the late 1980s, finally matches up against an NFC foe.

Davis wore a slimmed-down version of the flak jacket he wore in last week’s divisional playoff win over Kansas City to protect ribs that were bruised in a wild-card game against Jacksonville the week before.

``I didn’t want to risk getting my ribs hurt again,″ Davis said. ``I didn’t want to get them hurt and say, `I should have worn the jacket.′ It was a thinner jacket, and I felt comfortable wearing it.″

He escaped without further damage to his ribs, but did remain on the sideline with a minor eye injury for the last nine plays of a second-quarter drive that culminated in Jason Elam’s field goal.

``I got poked in the eye is all,″ he said. ``They beat me up today. That’s a physical defense, probably the toughest defense to run against. We knew it was going to be tough, but we stuck with it.″

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