Welcome to the first, and hopefully not last, weekly edition of How The West Was Won. In this report I’ll take a look at the goings on in the AFC West after each week. Who were the movers and shakers? How does this impact the playoff picture? Most (ok, you got me, some) of the news around the AFC West that matters to you. And by you I clearly mean me. Let’s begin.
Let’s start in KC, where the Chiefs, led by the NFL’s backup QB version of Jekyll and Hyde, stole a game from the Jags. Yes, that was a touchdown. No, I don’t know what the refs saw. But let’s be honest…it’s not like the Jags were going to win anyways. Tashaun Gipson did an excellent job batting down a would be interception from teammate Prince Amukamara. As always, Blake Bortles made sure his team was out of it before he starting his garbage time fantasy stat padding. Good grief. The Jags somehow make 2-6 look worse than the Browns. Sorta. Look, yes the Chiefs struggled against a awful excuse for a football team, but they’re dealing with a ton of injuries. The Jags couldn’t have come at a better time for the Chiefs who sit at 6-2 and second place in the division. The Chiefs are like if the aught’s Colts had a baby with the aught’s Eagles. Win a ton of regular season games with the most dink and dunk west coast offense you’ve ever seen. Boring, but effective. KC does have to watch out for the AFC West’s Trap Game Team of the year: The Carolina Panthers. Moving on…
Oh San Diego…like your little brother that just won’t leave the big kids alone. After a 1-4 start the Chargers have won 3 of the their last 4. Just so that we can’t take them out of the playoff picture. A wild shoot out that saw Melvin Gordon rush for a 196 and one tug not to mention another 65 yards receiving. Melvin Gordon is making a strong push for 2015 rookie of the year…Not to mention, this week, Rivers decided not to throw it to the other team (unlike the three times he decided to do that last week…). Wish I could say the same for Mariota. The Chargers, at 4-5 in firm control of last place, are looking forward to the Dolphins. We could watch the best rush vs rush match up we’ve seen in a while. What passing league?!
WHAT! A! BEATDOWN! Ok, maybe it wasn’t, but how about them Raiders?! Denver looked lost trying to stop the two headed monster that is Latavius Murray and Jalen Richard. The Raiders D came to play and made sure that the Broncos got off to a slow start. Carr and co. marched up and down the field all day long on their way to 400+ yards of total offense. The Raiders seemed content to let the league’s best pass defense hold their passing game in check. Who needs to pass when you can run it down their throat?! Were there times when the Raiders defense reminded you why they’re one of the worst in the league? Yes. Were there times when the Broncos offenses reminded you why they’re one of the worst in the league? Yes. As the saying goes, offense wins games, defense wins championships. Well, this was just a game. I’m sure the Raiders will take the W.
This was a huge week in the AFC West as the Raiders took sole possession of first place in arguably the best division in football. The Broncos fall from first to third while the Chiefs move up to second. And the Chargers are still around I guess. The Broncos lost their stud DT which clearly hurt as their D was already missing Talib. The Broncos and Chiefs both square off against NFC South trap games in the red hot Saints and Panthers respectively. The Chargers look to steal a win from the Dolphins. With the Raiders on a bye, this week will be important for the Chiefs and Broncos to hold tight to their positions and not drop a game in what is shaping up to be a thrilling push to the post season.