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Lelie back in Denver, helps Raiders to 31-10 upset

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DENVER — Ashley Lelie and the Oakland Raiders both got their revenge on the Denver Broncos.

The deep-threat receiver who forced a trade out of Denver in 2006 after a bitter holdout returned to Invesco Field on Sunday and helped lead the Raiders to a stunning 31-10 win over the Broncos by catching a touchdown pass and setting up another with a spectacular 51-yard reception.

Rookie Darren McFadden ran for two 1-yard touchdowns and the Raiders (3-8) snapped a four-game losing streak and rectified their 41-14 thrashing at the hands of the Broncos (6-5) in the opener.

In that game, the Broncos repeatedly picked on since-released cornerback DeAngelo Hall, and they went after his replacement, Chris Johnson, with very little success Sunday.

Lelie's long catch set up McFadden's first score, which broke a 10-10 tie in the third quarter and snapped a 15-quarter drought for Oakland's offense.

The Raiders hadn't scored a touchdown on offense since Oct. 26 against Baltimore.

McFadden's second 1-yard TD followed linebacker Thomas Howard's interception of Jay Cutler's pass at midfield and put the Raiders ahead 31-10.

In between, Lelie caught a 4-yard touchdown pass from JaMarcus Russell, then held his right hand to his ear to take in all the boos from the fans who once adored him.

The Raiders, who had lost seven of eight, also got a punt return for a touchdown from Johnnie Lee Higgins for the second straight week.

After Brett Kern outkicked his coverage with a 60-yard boomer just before halftime, Higgins skittered 89 yards down the Broncos sideline, picking up blocks along the way, including one near the goal line by helmetless teammate Jon Alston, who ran the last 45 yards with his helmet in his left hand.

That gave Oakland a 10-3 halftime lead.

Lelie caught 54 passes for 1,084 yards and seven touchdowns during his best NFL season with Denver in 2004, but he hasn't come close to replicating those numbers since then with the Broncos, the Atlanta Falcons, San Francisco Giants or Raiders.

Coming into Sunday's game at Denver, Lelie was the Raiders' ninth-leading receiver with seven catches for 105 yards and a touchdown this season.

Against his former team, he caught four passes for 92 yards.

The Broncos stumbled and fumbled their way through the first half but appeared to right themselves when they took the second-half kickoff and covered 85 yards in 13 plays for the tying score.

On fourth-and-1 from the 6, Peyton Hillis, the Broncos' new 250-pound tailback took the pitch from Cutler and followed left tackle Ryan Clady's block of Howard into the end zone.

But Russell and Lelie hooked up for 51 yards on the first play of the next drive and it was all downhill for Denver from there.

Matt Prater missed field goals of 47 and 43 yards for Denver in the first half. He was good from 44.

Denver's opening drive came to a halt when Raiders defensive tackle Terdell Sands broke up a hand off between Cutler and Hillis at the Oakland 7, and safety Gibril Wilson recovered.

Sebastian Janikowski kicked a 26-yarder for Oakland.

The stadium was mostly empty by the closing minutes, when the biggest cheers came when security personnel tackled three fans who ran onto the field. Two of them high-stepped it off the field, their hands handcuffed behind their backs.