Denver Broncos: Most Important Games Outside AFC West in 2012

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Denver Broncos: Most Important Games Outside AFC West in 2012
Al Bello/Getty Images

The Denver Broncos slid into the playoffs last year after winning the AFC West with an 8-8 record, even winning a playoff game.

But with the offseason signing of Peyton Manning, the Broncos have their sights set even higher.

The AFC West division is a bit of a mystery right now with the Chargers and Chiefs both underachieving last season and the Raiders getting ready for their first full season without legendary owner Al Davis.

The division seems up for grabs, but the Broncos surely feel they are the best team and they have much higher aspirations than just repeating as division champions.

For that to occur, they will have to get big wins outside the division, and their 2012 schedule is full of opponents that will put these new-look Broncos to the test.

Here are the games that will be key if the Broncos are to make a deeper playoff run than in 2011.

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