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(Reuters) - Peyton Manning broke the National Football League career touchdown pass record as the Denver Broncos thrashed the San Francisco 49ers 42-17 on Sunday.
With his third touchdown of the game late in the first half, the Denver quarterback notched his 509th regular season touchdown pass, surpassing the previous record held by Brett Favre.
Manning's record stole the show for the Broncos, who completely dominated the visiting 49ers to improve to 5-1 for the season and consolidate first place in the AFC West.
With victory assured, Manning left the game early after taking his career touchdown tally to 510 with a pass to Demaryius Thomas, who had earlier caught the record-breaking 509th touchdown.
Manning completed 22-of-26 passes for 318 yards and four touchdowns.
Manning downplayed his accomplishment, saying that winning the game was the most important outcome.
"It was a great win tonight, that's first and foremost," he told reporters. "It was a special night, certainly more special because of the way our team played and because we got the win. It's definitely one I’ll always remember."
Denver coach John Fox paid tribute to the lynchpin of his team.
"It was pretty special to witness such an accomplishment," Fox said. "This was probably our most complete game to date, both offensively, defensively, as well as the kicking game."
The 49ers had a three-game winning streak halted and got more bad news with center Daniel Kilgore reportedly having suffered a suspected broken leg.
"The Broncos were on their game, especially Peyton," said San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh.
"Congratulations to him for breaking the record. The Broncos played a great game. They were better in every phase."
Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Greg Stutchbury