The Raiders came extremely close to helping the Chargers earn a share of the lead in the AFC West, but destiny continues to favor the golden boy in Kansas City.
Both the Chiefs and Chargers were able to create some distance from both the Raiders and Broncos as the latter two lost their games in week five. However, a surprise win for the Broncos over the Chargers next week instantly muddies the group behind KC once again. If the Bolts want to alleviate a lot of unnecessary pressure, they need to win at home in primetime this coming Monday.
Now let’s take a look at where the division stacks up after five weeks:
1.) Kansas City Chiefs (4-1, 2-0 AFC West)
It’s simply incredible how no lead is safe when you’re facing the Chiefs.
Patrick Mahomes led a rally from 17 points down to narrowly escape the Raiders 30-29 on Monday night in a game truly fit for primetime. Travis Kelce tied the franchise record with four touchdown receptions because the Raiders seemingly forgot to cover him every single time they got into the red zone.
The Chiefs host the Bills this Sunday in a matchup between two of the best offenses in football.
2.) Los Angeles Chargers (3-2, 1-1 AFC West)
The Chargers came oh-so close to dropping their game against the Browns due to another eyebrow-raising fourth-down call by Brandon Staley. The second-year head coach decided to go for it on a weak fourth-and-two but the slant to Mike Williams was bottled up by cornerback Denzel Ward. Only needing a first down to get into field goal range, the Browns managed just 10 yards before Cade York attempted a 54-yard kick.
Obviously York pushed it right and the Bolts left Cleveland victorious, but they were also this close to losing that game and having Staley be the next major talking point for the entire following week. But that’s how the NFL goes sometimes.
The Chargers have a primetime date with Russell Wilson and the Broncos next week on Monday Night Football.
3.) Denver Broncos (2-3, 0-1 AFC West)
The Broncos lost this past week’s Thursday Night Football contest against the Colts in what could be in the running for the most boring game of football to happen this season. They lost by a score of 12-9 in a game with zero touchdowns and both quarterbacks threw a pair of interceptions.
Russell Wilson has now thrown just four touchdowns to three interceptions through five games with the Broncos. That’s definitely not what Denver expected to receive in return for forking out a massive extension.
The Broncos will visit the Chargers on this week’s edition of Monday Night Football.
4.) Las Vegas Raiders (1-4, 1-2 AFC West)
The Raiders were incredibly close to knocking off the Chiefs in Arrowhead but their offense wilted after a strong start that saw them build a 17-0 lead in the first half. Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones had Patrick Mahomes in hell for most of the first quarter, but as they always do, the Chiefs said “enough is enough” before going on a 24-3 run that started in the second quarter and stretched into the third.
Both teams were victims of controversial calls that helped either team extend pivotal drives, but it was the Raiders who eventually couldn’t overcome their misfortune.
The Raiders will host the Texans next week in what could easily be a get-right game for their struggling team.