AFC West

NFL Football: AFC West Preview

The AFC West, my favorite division. Well, I can’t help but be a little bias being that the Denver Broncos are my favorite National Football League team. However, I do not have them in first as much as I would like to. Defense is strong in the West but not as much for the offense.

 

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My last place team is the Kansas City Chiefs.

This should honestly go without saying but losing starting quarterback Alex Smith hurts this team. They must have a lot of trust in Patrick Mahomes to release Smith who had over 4,000 yards throwing and 25 touchdowns. They also lost offensive guard Zach Fulton and wide receiver Albert Wilson. Not exactly sure how much I would trust Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill this year, but Kareem Hunt will be a force to reckon with once again.

The Chiefs lost their best corner Marcus Peters but gained David Amerson from the Raiders and Kendall Fuller. The return of Eric Berry should compliment the backfield very nicely. They lost some veterans in the at linebacker but drafted Reggie Ragland and added Anthony Hickens

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The third place team is the Denver Broncos.

Just like the Chiefs, the Broncos traded away their number one guy at QB. However, in this case, they received an upgrade. Case Keenum joins the group after coming off an NFC conference championship. They also picked up offensive tackle Jared Veldheer which is an upgrade from losing Donald Stephenson.

Denver will also start the season with possibly a new running back. Devontae Booker and rookie Royce Freeman will battle it out for the position and I’m putting my money on Freeman. Denver also added SMU receiver Courtland Sutton to help out in the passing game.

Denver’s defense has been a wrecking havoc on offenses for some time now. They released CB Aqib Talib but with Bradley Roby and Chris Harris will still be able to lock down defenders. Von Miller and Bradley Chubb on the defensive line will be one of the most impressive lines in the NFL.

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The second place team is the Los Angeles Chargers.

Depending on the health of tight end Hunter Henry and WR Keenan Allen, it could help in the long haul for this San Diego team. Without Antonio Gates, Henry will be called upon. The one weakness for the Chargers offense is the receiving core. The return of former draft picks Mike Williams and Forrest Lamp will be beneficial. The offense may look toward Melvin Gordon once again to carry the offense.

The defense added safety Derwin James in the draft to help out the secondary with All-Pro corner Casey Heyward. Joey Bosa will once again be a dominant force on the line. The addition of Uchenna Nwosu at linebacker will try to improve on the 328.4 yards allowed per game.

 

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The first place team is no other than my personal enemy, the Oakland Raiders.

With new head coach Jon Gruden, this team can become very good. They added several weapons on offense especially receiver Jordy Nelson from the Green Bay Packers. If Nelson stays healthy, that’s going to be a deadly weapon for Derek Carr. Other additions are Martavis Bryant and Doug Martin. They will both compliment the normal starters.

They also added several players to the defense as well. Marcus Gilchrist, Derrick Johnson, and Tahir Whitehead, to name a few. TJ Carrie, who left for the Cleveland Browns will be a big hole to fill at corner. Adding Leon Hall and Daryl Worley while also getting back a healthy Gareon Conley will help fill Carrie’s role. It’s no doubt that Kalil Mack is one of the best at his position and he has the defense to help him.

Honestly, I don’t have a clue as to who will really win this division. This division can go so many ways but I do know that Kansas City will fall last in line. The AFC West was considered the best division in football two years ago, but now I can’t say that for 2018.

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Preston Bostain
Preston covers the Tennessee Titans and the AFC South for NGSC Sports. He also covers Nashville Predators hockey.
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