LANDOVER, Md. • While plenty of Denver Broncos fans will want to blame Chris Simms or the defense for Sunday’s loss, running back Correll Buckhalter took his share of the blame.

Buckhalter lost a fumble in the first quarter at Washington’s 31-yard line. He did not get another carry the rest of the game.

“I feel like I let my teammates down today,” Buckhalter said. “I take it upon myself. I’m a better player than that.”

Knowshon Moreno played a majority of the game after Buckhalter’s fumble, gaining 97 yards on 18 carries. Broncos coach Josh McDaniels didn’t cite Buckhalter’s fumble as a reason Moreno played so much.

“Just a decision, he was running it good so we just left him in the game,” McDaniels said.

Orton has been here before

Last year, after seven good games with the Bears, quarterback Kyle Orton suffered a high ankle sprain. He missed a game, and his numbers dipped when he came back. Orton suffered another ankle injury Sunday. 

“It’s a tough sport and it happens,” Orton said. “You have to try to play through it. I was hoping to come back out and I wasn’t able to. Hopefully I’ll be ready to go next week.”

Odds and ends

Running back Peyton Hillis was a healthy scratch. With Hillis inactive, Spencer Larsen started the game at fullback and played a number of snaps as a lead blocker. … Although outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil shared a sack with Darrell Reid in the third quarter and had another in the fourth quarter, he was credited with only one sack. At the end of Sunday’s afternoon games he led the NFL with 11.5 sacks. … McDaniels’ mind obviously was racing a bit after losing to the Redskins. “Give credit to the Chargers,” McDaniels said in his opening statement.