“AFC West-What I See”
Bring on the AFC-and-NFC Champiosnhip games this weekend. The NFL’s Final 4-is about to happen, meanwhile the 28-other teams in the league are trying to fix what is wrong, including 8-teams putting new coaching staffs in place.
Here’s what I see around the AFC-West.
KANSAS CITY…Superb job by Andy Reid in the growth of young flame-throwing QB-Patrick Mahomes. He makes every throw, doesn’t force thing, moves the pocket, can run and is the spiritual leader on offense. What a job Reid has done developing Mahomes so quickly. Maybe Andy’s finest coaching job. Even more impressive, the way the offense has not dropped off despite the self-destructive end to RB-Kareem Hunt’s career with the Chiefs. KC thought Spencer Ware could handle the running back chores, but he got hurt. Enter Damien Williams, the former Miami Hurricane, who looks special. Yes the offense spins around all the big plays of TE-Travis Kelce and game-breaker Tyreek Hill, but look for contributions from Demarcus Robinson, Chris Conley and tight end Demetrius Harris. The defense still looks suspect, though Chris Jones and the blitz linebackers have grown alot as the season has gone on. They’re still playing aren’t they, so who cares about a 31st ranking that side of the defensive ball. Letter grade (A).
CHARGERS…..Philip Rivers took them as far as they could go till they started losing players. They lost their explosiveness when WR-Keenan Allen and RBs Melvin Gordon-Austin Ekeler got hurt. When the chunk plays went away-so did the chance to win games. They patched as much as they could after those veteran LBs, Denzel Perryman and Jatavis Brown went down with season ending injuries. They did solve the FG kicking crisis with Michael Badgley and the emergence of return man Desmond King. I give them a (B) for the season.
DENVER…John Elway may have been one of the greatest QBs in the history of the NFL, but he has not proven to be one of the greatest in the GM office. He’s now on his 4th coach. He’s gone thru 5-quarterbacks, including wasting high first and second round picks. They have running backs, but not much of an offensive line. The defense is starting to show some age around LB-Von Miller. They need an infusion of more skill talent on both sides of the ball, and I don’t think the Broncos are now a destination point for NFL free agents. A major rebuild may be about to begin. Grade them a (D) on and off the field this season.
RAIDERS….The NFL’s version of homeless also looks leaderless after a dreadful John Gruden debut. Owner Mark Davis has a nitemare situation with this stadium mess, at least for 2019. And his roster is even worse. The offensive line is in transition led by LT-Kolton Miller.. Who knows how much time Marshawn Lynch and Doug Martin have at running back. The wide receivers have lots of mileage on them. Not alot of quality parts around QB-Derek Carr. They played a ton of kids on defense, got beat up badly. S-Karl Joseph and a couple of DTs are about all they have. And what did they get when Gruden got done dealing away Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper? The chance to pick 24th and 27th in the draft? It was bad last year and could be bad for a couple of more years. Like Al Davis would say ‘The greatness of the Raiders is in the future’…a long ways away. Is there a letter grade worse than an (F)?.