Re-signings And Familiarity Thrust Chiefs Atop AFC West p. II

4 of 4

The Oakland Raiders have a long list of their own free agents that they are yet undecided on. The players they have brought in include:

C Rodney Hudson

LB Malcolm Smith

TE Lee Smith

RB Roy Helu

DT Dan Williams

LB Curtis Lofton

S Nate Allen

CB James Dockery

QB Christian Ponder

RB Trent Richardson

Rodney Hudson is probably the best of the bunch. Trent Richardson is certainly a questionable move. But, Nate Allen and Dan Williams are solid acquisitions.

The way these players actually affect the Raiders starting line-up looks like this:

Rodney Hudson for Stefen Wisniewski at Center

Curtis Lofton for Nick Roach at LB

Dan Williams for C.J. Wilson at DT

Nate Allen for Tyvon Branch at Safety

I don’t see enough improvement here for the Raiders to compete for a division crown in 2015 but, I do see enough for them to over take the Broncos if their fall from grace is bigger than expected.

When you consider that Kansas City was a simple completed pass away from splitting with Denver in 2014 (and consequently a playoff berth), and you consider all the change that’s taking place there, and weigh that against the stability and improvements the Chiefs have made, then you can easily see the strong possibility of the Broncos finishing third in the AFC West behind the Chiefs and the Chargers in 2015. There’s just too much messy metamorphosis that Denver is dealing with, and too many formidable challenges they must solve along the way.

And not enough familiarity.

What do you say Addict fans? Has there been a major power shift in the AFC West this off-season? Or, is it still too early to tell?