As the Kansas City Chiefs dropped yet another game this week to fall below .500, the rest of the AFC West results made for some interesting developments. We, as Chiefs fans, make fun of the fact that the Los Angeles Chargers are so often crowned the champs of the AFC West before the season starts, but in this season, it looks like that might be true. The Chiefs needed to win this game to have a hope of seeing the 1 seed, but now, national media is questioning whether this is even a playoff team. That seems a bit much to me – after all, they still have Mahomes, Kelce, and Hill, but there are some serious problems on both sides of the ball that need to be solved if they don’t want to be a “one and done” team.
The Chargers played in a game that rivaled the Baker Mayfield-Patrick Mahomes college shootout when Justin Herbert and Baker Mayfield met for an explosion of offense. The final score, 47-42 certainly leaves questions about what happened to the Chargers defense, but the reality is that Herbert just won a shootout against a very stout Cleveland defense. Cleveland is a team we all see advancing to the playoffs. To beat them, the Chargers are now in conversation with the Buffalo Bills as the top team in the AFC.
The only consolation this week was that the Raiders lost to the Bears. The Bears are not a good team and are fraught with controversy at the quarterback position which makes the loss even more satisfying. The Raiders can’t seem to get out of their own way and are now having to deal with the backlash from a 2011 Jon Gruden email that lodged racist comments at DeMaurice Smith. On top of that, more emails are coming out. Not a good look for a team that is quickly falling down the AFC West rankings.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Gruden resigned as the Raiders head coach shortly after this story was filed, following reports that he used homophobic slurs in past email communication.
The Broncos continue to be what we thought they were having lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Even with Teddy Bridgewater back from concussion protocol, it is clear that the Broncos are going to lose to mediocre teams and beat the absolute worst in the NFL. The soft start to the schedule made it appear that the Broncos were better than they were, but recently, they have come back to reality. They will end up at the bottom if they continue playing this way.
Here’s an official look at the AFC WEST standings after Week 5.
- L.A. Chargers – 4-1
- Denver Broncos – 3-2
- Las Vegas Raiders – 3-2
- Kansas City Chiefs – 2-3
And here’s a look at the rest of the AFC as well.
- Buffalo Bills – 4-1
- New England Patriots – 2-3
- Miami Dolphins – 1-4
- New York Jets – 1-4
- Baltimore Ravens – 3-1*
- Cincinnati Bengals – 3-2
- Cleveland Browns – 3-2
- Pittsburgh Steelers – 2-3
- Tennessee Titans – 3-2
- Indianapolis Colts – 1-3*
- Houston Texans – 1-4
- Jacksonville Jaguars – 0-5
*Denotes the Monday Night Football matchup on October 11 that may impact standings.