Los Angeles Chargers
As if the year following the Chiefs second straight trip to the Super Bowl would be any different, there were a number of national pundits who were picking the Los Angeles Chargers to win the AFC West.
Through the early part of the season, with the Chiefs struggling mightily to find consistency on both sides of the ball, it looked like 2021 would finally be the year the Chargers proved them correct. Things seem to have turned ever so slightly in the last several weeks.
The Chiefs have caught fire, winning four straight games while the Chargers have lost four of their last six. Their worst loss came in Week 6 to the Baltimore Ravens, losing 34-6 and going from a consensus contender to a major question mark.
The Chargers are on this list because they present a dual threat to the Chiefs. While the Chiefs have rebounded, the AFC West is still in reach for multiple teams. If the Chiefs falter the Chargers could still mount a comeback for the division crown, an integral milestone for a team hoping for a first-round bye.
Even if the Chiefs maintain their pace and win the division, the early season and multiple contests in the past make the Chargers one of the most dangerous teams for the Chiefs to face in the playoffs.