Kansas City Chiefs likely to win AFC West over Broncos, says NFL expert


Few experts in the NFL media scene are actually that: experts. Most of them are people like you and me. They watch the game, some have some inside connections, but really they worked hard and elevated themselves to a national platform. Frankly, most opinions from these people are ludicrous.

Then there is Gil Brandt. Brandt is 82 years old and is the Godfather of modern scouting, working with the Dallas Cowboys from their inception in 1960 until 1989, when Jerry Jones took ownership, Throughout his tenure, the Cowboys won a pair of Super Bowls and appeared in five, all while stringing together 20 consecutive winning seasons.

In other words, when Brandt talks (or writes), you listen (or read).

This week, Brandt wrote a piece for NFL.com about last year’s division winners and ranked them in order of most likely to fall back in 2015. The Denver Broncos came in third out of the eight teams, and Brandt clearly has love for the Kansas City Chiefs. See what he had to say:

"Peyton Manning says he’s healthy — but he’s also 39, and no one can play forever. Historically, when quarterbacks hit the wall, their completion percentages go down and the interceptions go up. Might Manning forestall the inevitable for another year? Sure, but the odds are starting to stack up against him. I also wouldn’t dismiss the loss of Julius Thomas; he’s a very good tight end. What was once a supercharged receiving corps has lost a fair amount of firepower over the years, with the departures of Thomas and Eric Decker and the decline of Wes Welker (who remains unsigned). I’m interested to see how No. 1 receiver Demaryius Thomas responds this season. It’ll help if Emmanuel Sanders can repeat his off-the-charts performance from 2014.The Kansas City Chiefs have shown they can win, and they made a great addition over the offseason in Jeremy Maclin, who really brings a lot to the table. Plus, quarterback Alex Smith plays better than most people think. The Chiefs have a good shot to unseat the Broncos."

Not that it matters, but I unbiasedly agree. Kansas City has a stronger roster, and while the Chiefs have questions along the offensive line, the Broncos have more. Between Manning starting to age significantly, a coaching staff overhaul and major losses in free agency, Denver doesn’t have the look of a true contender.

The opinions of Kansas City have been all over the map this offseason, with some major outlets ranking it to finish ahead of Denver. Others have the Chiefs finishing third in the division behind the Broncos and San Diego Chargers.

If nothing else, it should be a wild ride.