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State of the AFC West Week 9

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Well well well, here we are after week 9, a week I'd been looking forward to for awhile. I had a crazy day on Sunday which of course had a perfect ending. Last night's game was the proverbial "icing on the cake". The Chargers are now 1 game back at the halfway point of the season with 8 games to go. The Broncos still  have the advantage with the 1 game lead and a win over the Chargers as a potential tiebreaker. As far as the schedules, of the 8 games remaining, 3 are easy division games (2 KC 1 OAK), but 4 are against tough teams (SD, NYG, INDY, PHI) and their game this week at Washington. On the other hand, the Chargers get the Browns and Titans, don't have to play Indy, but they only play the Chiefs one more time. As far as momentum, it is clearly on the side of the Chargers who have capped their three game winning streak with an emotional win at the Meadowlands. The Broncos on the other hand are riding a two-game losing streak that included two disappointing second halves. Oakland and KC are still out of the picture.

Jump the break for individual teams.

AFC West Standings

Denver 6 2 0 150 124
San Diego 5 3 0 206 179
Oakland 2 6 0 78 201
Kansas City 1 7 0 126 205

(updated 11.10.2009 at 1:30 AM PST)


Oakland Raiders: The Raiders had a quiet bye week getting healthy and trying not to lose any football games. Running back Darren McFadden, wide receiver Chaz Schilens, left guard Robert Gallery and right tackle Cornell Green returned to practice Monday and are expected to play against the Kansas City Chiefs this week. So that's good news. Although Tom Cable won't be charged criminally, the NFL is evaluating the situation and sending out people to determine if Cable should attend anger management classes. The National League of Women (NOW) and other women's rights groups are calling for Cable's job. The Raiders next division match-up is this week's pillow-fight of the week in Oakland. Let the battle to determine the most dysfunctional team begin, too bad nobody will see it because it will likely be blacked out.

Oakland Raiders Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Cornell Green calf 11/09/2009
Tony Stewart chest 11/09/2009
Gerard Warren toe 11/09/2009
Jon Alston shoulder 11/09/2009
Ricky Brown ankle 11/09/2009
Robert Gallery fibula 11/09/2009
Tommy Kelly elbow 11/09/2009
Chris Johnson groin 11/09/2009
Chaz Schilens foot 11/09/2009

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
John Bowie knee 09/30/2009
Oren O'Neal ankle 10/14/2009

Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs played a close game against the Jaguars which inevitably ended in another loss. As the Chiefs march toward another top 5 draft pick, the big story is still the rapid fall of Larry Johnson which ended in his release from the Chiefs. Although they will probably end up paying him a lot of money since I doubt anyone will pick him up, this gives Jamaal Charles more opportunity to play and gets rid of a clubhouse cancer. Chris Chambers seem to have rejuvenated their offense, at least for the moment, with two TD passes. The addition seems to have helped the Chiefs and the Chargers at the same time, and Chris will probably be happier too. As already mentioned, the Chiefs next division game is at Oakland which I'm sure will be terribly exciting. 

Kansas City Chiefs Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Jon McGraw thigh 11/09/2009

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Devard Darling knee 09/01/2009
Jarrad Page calf 11/04/2009
Jackie Battle shoulder 10/14/2009
Colin Brown undisclosed 09/05/2009

Denver Broncos: Will the real Broncos please stand up? Are they the 6-0 team or the 0-2 team? Are they the second-half juggernaut or the second-half duds? Is Kyle Orton the QB who threw one INT in 7 games or 3 INT's in one game? Are they a punishing opponents on the lines or the team that didn't get ONE rushing first-down against the Steelers? The answer is probably somewhere close to the middle. Teams are starting to key on the Broncos weakness and adjusting their game-plans as such. Kyle Orton looks nervous as opposed to the pillar of strength he looked like earlier in the season. Either way, the Broncos are much better than everyone thought but they still aren't an elite team. The Steelers were clearly the superior team last night, even at Mile High. The Broncos have lost some momentum going forward but they are still healthy and still have the advantage over the Chargers. Now is the time for Josh McDaniels to adjust to the adjustments that other teams are making. Going forward, we will see if the Broncos and McDaniels are studs or duds. The game at Washington this weekend may tell us a lot about the Broncos. Their next division match-up looks to be a huge game with playoff implications at Mile High against the Chargers.

Denver Broncos Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Ryan McBean knee 11/10/2009
Peyton Hillis other-excused 11/10/2009
David Bruton groin 11/10/2009

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Nick Greisen knee 08/05/2009
J'Vonne Parker knee 08/08/2009

San Diego Super Chargers: The Bolts are flying high after an emotional victory at the Meadowlands and gaining the momentum in the AFC West race if not the advantage. They are finally getting healthy, emotionally and physically, as well and it looks like All-Pro center Nick Hardwick will make his return to Qualcomm Stadium this weekend against the Eagles. The Chargers are still a little banged up at the linebacker position; SP95 was injured in the Giants game and Kevin Burnett and Tim Dobbins are still ailing. It looks like Phillips and Burnett will play this weekend while Dobbins will sit. LB Jyles Tucker is also most likely out this weekend.  It looks like the Eagles are having the same problem the Chargers were earlier in the season: inability to keep anyone healthy. If Westbrook is out and the Eagles must depend on the passing game, the Chargers could win big with improved pass rush from Shawne Merriman and Shaun Phillips. The Chargers are also only 2-2 this season and they need to improve their play at home. The game is already sold out so we know it will be loud this weekend. Our next division match-up is Week 11 at Mile High Stadium.

San Diego Chargers Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Tim Dobbins knee 11/09/2009
Nick Hardwick ankle 11/09/2009
Kevin Burnett ankle 11/09/2009

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Ryon Bingham arm 09/05/2009
Jamal Williams triceps 09/19/2009
Antwan Applewhite hamstring 10/20/2009
Brandon Hughes knee 09/02/2009

Philadelphia Eagles Injuries


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Max Jean-Gilles shoulder 11/09/2009


Player Injury Type Injury Date
Victor Abiamiri knee 11/09/2009
Chris Gocong other-excused 11/09/2009
Akeem Jordan knee 11/10/2009
Brian Westbrook ankle 11/09/2009
Quintin Demps ankle 11/09/2009

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Shawn Andrews back 09/15/2009
Stewart Bradley knee 09/01/2009
Omar Gaither foot 10/22/2009
Cornelius Ingram knee 09/01/2009
Fenuki Tupou chest 09/05/2009