NFL: Sneaking a Peek and Predicting the AFC West
Football season is right around the corner. For teams in the AFC West, it is an uphill climb. Last year’s division champion, the Kansas City Chiefs are the proverbial creams of the crop. However, each NFL season is different. 2019 could see a new AFC West Champion. In saying that, let us take a look at the division and try to predict who will finish were in the open AFC West.
The Raiders are still a team in transition. While they certainly saw themselves become a better team in the offseason, they still have a ways to go. Offensively, with Derek Carr being in his second year of the system, they should see an increase in points. The additions of WR, Antonio Brown and rookie RB Josh Jacobs should also help the offense succeed.
Where I see the Raiders struggling is on the defensive side of the ball. The rest of the teams in the AFC West are very strong defensively. This will keep the Raiders at bay in the division. Nonetheless, they will not be able to keep opponents out of the end zone. Therefore, ending all hopes of making the playoffs and especially winning the AFC West.
The Broncos are another team in transition. 2019 will see a new head coach, a new coaching staff, and new QB. Joe Flacco was acquired from the Baltimore Ravens during the offseason. While I believe that all of this will make the Broncos better in the AFC West, they will still have work to do.
On the defense, the Broncos probably boast one of the best in the league. They will once again be led by sack masters Von Miller and Bradley Chubb. The additions in the secondary will also make Denver one of the best in the league and the best in the AFC West. While the defense will keep them in games, they will not win enough games for the Broncos to be contenders.
Los Angeles Chargers
I struggle to put the Chargers here. However, I think they end up here by default. The Melvin Gordon saga will end up hurting them in the long run. Especially when it comes to the AFC West Title. The offense will have o center around the arm of Phillip Rivers in order to succeed. While they have shown flashes of this in the past, this will eventually catch up to them.
Meanwhile, the defense has lost one of its stars for the early part of 2019. Derwin James is out with an injury to start the season. If the defense can overcome the offense, the Chargers will see success in the AFC West. Although, it will be a bit overwhelming for them in the beginning.
Kansas City Chiefs
As I stated in the opening, this team is the cream of the crop in the AFC West. If they can get even ¾ of the performance they got from Patrick Mahomes in 2018, they will be sure to win the division. My concern on offense will be running game. Damien Williams looks to be the lead dog behind Mahomes. If he can give them 800+ yards, it will be a success for the Chiefs backfield.
On defense, the Chiefs return Chris Jones, Reggie Ragland, Anthony Hitchens, Kendell Fuller, and Daniel Sorenson. They added Tyrann Mathieu, Bashaud Breeland, and Frank Clark. It is evident that the front office knew this was the weak spot of the team. If they can meld they certainly will give the Chiefs a boost. Not only in the AFC West but the NFL as well.
The AFC West could see a new division winner. You never know what the season holds. Nonetheless, at this time I feel that it will look very similar to 2018.
How do you see the 2019 AFC West playing out? Leave a comment below.
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