The Chargers are the only team in the division who are playing a game this weekend without any playoff implications. The Chiefs can knock the Broncos out of playoff contention and the Raiders can also play a spoiler role with a win over the Ravens. The difference of course is that the Ravens control their own destiny while the Broncos do not. The Broncos not only need to win, but they need help from teams that have already locked up playoff bids and have nothing to play for.
The Chiefs managed to keep the Bengals offense out of rhythm for awhile but their impotent offense could not put enough points on the board even with the big game from their only bright spot on offense, Jamaal Charles. He really seems like the only good player on the team right now, and the pro-bowl voters apparently have that same feeling. I would say that the Chiefs really have nothing to play for this weekend but since it is a divisional game that affects the Broncos chances to advance to the playoffs, I expect a big effort on Sunday. The Broncos will probably manage to win but it would be a good moral boost for the Chiefs to end the season with a divisional win and it would be a HUGE downer for the Broncos organization.
The Broncos made it closer against the Eagles than I thought they would, and managed to score 27 points despite a pedestrian day on offense with only 241 total yards including only 70 on the ground. Being flagged 9 times for 95 yards didn't help their cause but the Eagles inability to hold onto the ball sure did. I'm of the opinion that Josh McDaniel's inexperience has caused the team to be undisciplined and cocky which explains their inconsistency. I know it happened a while ago, but I mean a head coach jawing with opposing teams players? I mean really? I don't care who "started" it, a head coach should ignore it, not encourage it. It's just one example of the immaturity of the head coach which has translated into the immaturity of a team that had a lot of potential after going 6-0 and is now on the brink of a second straight year with an EPIC collapse. They are setting records out there in Denver, congrats guys.
Speaking of teams who are inconsistent and setting records for failure, the Raiders followed up a good performance with another stinker. I know they have injuries at QB and I know the Browns offense has looked better but "C'mon man!". They had nearly twice the amount of total offensive yards as Denver in their game but managed only 9 points. I guess Charlie Frye's line of 333 yards and 3 picks tells the story. What's the deal with the 3s Chuck? How about that day that Jerome Harrison had, 148 yards and 1 TD on a whopping 39 carries. That's actually under 4 YPC but considering Quinn's absence and the Raiders red-zone fail all day gave the Browns plenty of room to work with. By the way, SDSU alum and 2 time MWC defensive player of the year Kirk Morrison led the Raiders in tackles (yet again) with 10 including a forced fumble and a sack. I really think he would be a great addition at ILB for the Chargers, even though I know AJ doesn't go after free agents. Kirk is also affected by the collective bargaining agreement, so he would be a RFA anyway if no agreement is reached. Anyway, I actually think if the Raiders manage to have a good draft and make some good moves in the offseason they have enough of a base to compete for a wild-card spot next season.