Friday, July 31, 2009

AFC West Predictions

1. San Diego Chargers 11-5
This years Chargers team has not made to many big changes from last year. They will however be returning their all-star linebacker Shawne Merriman. Merriman is the leader of that defense and having lost him last year for pretty much the entire season was a big blow to this team. Yet with that injury they were still able to make the playoffs and beat the Colts in Wild Card week before losing to the Steelers the next week. Their offense finished 2nd in the NFL in points per game and look for this defense with the addition of Merriman to improve their 31st overall pass defense from last year by strongly improving the pass rush. Also, it has been reported several times that Ladanian Tomlinson who many thought has been losing a step of 2 showed up this offseason in the bast shape of his life and reports are saying he looks like the LT of old. LT and Darren Sproles should make for a dangerous backfield. With the weakness in this division, the Chargers are pretty much a lock for a playoff spot.

2. Oakland Raiders 7-9
This team could really go either way this year. 7-9 may be a little bit on the higher side of where I think they will be at the end of the year but if they can start winning some of their close games like they have not been in the past then the Raiders could end up in 2nd in the AFC West at 7-9. The scales however could just as easily tip the other way if the Raiders do not find a way to improve on their 31st ranked rush yards allowed per game statistic. This problem has plagued this team over the past few years however Tommy Kelly played surprisingly well up front last year and with a new D-Coordinator things could positively change. Do not look for very much production from their top 2 draft picks this year as  Darrius Heyward-Bey I don't think will develop the hands necessary to catch balls in traffic and Mike Mitchell adjusts to reading pro offenses. The Raiders will however continue to have a strong running game with Justin Fargas, Darren Mcfadden, and Michael Bush. That being said I think the Raiders finish 2nd in the AFC West behind San Diego.

3. Denver Broncos 5-11
This is a team that over the offseason imploded like nobody would believe. First, they fire their long time and super bowl winning head coach Mike Shanahan to bring in Patriots ex offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. Then with pro bowl quarterback with a tremendous arm already on the team (Jay Cutler), McDaniels tries to break the bank to bring in Matt Cassel from New England. This turned out to be very bad for McDaniels as Jay Cutler got upset and demanded a trade. I'm not saying that Cutler was right in demanding a trade or that McDaniels was wrong by not putting up with Cutler trying to run the team, I do however think that all around it was a terrible move on the part of McDaniels because they already had a pro-bowl proven QB and now you want to trade for somebody who didn't even make the playoffs with receivers Randy Moss and Wes Welker and one of the best O-lines in the game. It just doesn't make sense. And the worst part about this whole situation is they have no defense to fall back on because last year they had one of the worst defenses in the entire NFL. It could be a long season for Broncos fans.

4. Kansas City Chiefs 3-13
The Chiefs are in rebuilding mode and as we know for teams in the NFL that process usually takes a few years. They did however draft smart and heavily defensively with hopes to strengthen their defense first. This team did however add Matt Cassel who I do not think will be the savior in KC but is a good looking prospect for their future. The Chiefs brought in Todd Haley the ex Arizona Cardinals offensive coordinator from last season, and we all know the success their offense had. So look for the Chiefs to try to throw the ball downfield with some success this year but overall this roster is just to young to make a big impact this year but they are certainly doing good things for the future of Chiefs football.

No comments:

Post a Comment