With all the talk about Cassel and Cutler it got me to thinking, the AFC West is on the rise right now and the Chiefs are finally contributing to it. This isn't going to be an information well as much as it will be a discussion topic time to break down the AFC West's offense position by position and lets see how much chills you get thinking about the future
- Rivers>>>Right now Rivers is definitely the most proven QB in the division and is quickly establishing himself as one of the best young QB's in the NFL as he had an MVP run last year. However he has a short fuse and gets too emotional at times. Rivers finished 12th in overall passing but his passer rating was nothing short of fantastic at 105.5 leaving him a full edge over Cutler.
- Cutler>>>Cutler just came off a stellar season in which the Bronco's finally strayed away from their "pound the rock mentality" and decided to gun the ball a bit more. It worked out as they were one of the most high powered passing games last season despite running through nearly ten starting running backs. Cutler finished second only to Drew Brees but his interceptions leave analyst to believe he could be the second coming off Brett Favre. Still there aren't many teams in the NFL that would take Cassel over Cutler because Cutler has shown the NFL he can be a legitimate starter.
- Cassel>>> was just about the most hated NFL starter in week 2. Stories flew about how the Patriots were doomed to a bottom barrell season because they lost Tom Brady and how if they wanted to have even the slightest chance at playoffs they would have to go out and sign a vet like Bruce Gradkowski (how'd that work out in Cleaveland?). But Cassel proved spectators wrong by turning in a very Tom Brady like season in which he posted back to back 400 yard games. He ultimately finished 9th in the NFL for overall passing. He silenced spectators on just about every front by making big plays, cutting short accurate passes down low, managing critical situations (second Jets game.), running the rock into the endzone multiple times, and playing through adversity (the week his father died and he posted an awesome game).
- Russel>>>Still unsure about the guy. He hasn't really had a chance because of inept coaching and a pathetic offensive line. He has had the luxury of having a solid run game however and with Cable at the helm it seems it will stay that way. His potential is downright scary, he can run the ball and now that Brett Favre has retired he has the strongest arm in the NFL. If the Raiders can get offensive line help and one solid receiver (to play amongst all the #2 receivers they've acquired)
- Oakland>>> This was a toughie it was between Oakland and San Diego. However when I thought about it in a "who would you rather have on your team" way Darren McFadden, Micheal Bush, and Justin Fargas beat LT and Sproles anyday.... Well this year anyway. The Raiders finished 10th in the NFL in total rushing yards
- San Diego>>> A year ago this would've been easy, and Oakland would have been sitting at the bottom of this category. LT just turned in his worse rushing campaign of his career mostly due to a terrible offensive line and being overworked because the Charger defense without Shawn Merriman is useless. However young Sproles looks like he'll really be something in the NFL if spelled by a bruiser.
- Kansas City>>> Despite all f his nonsense Larry Johnson still has the talent to be a legitimate top ten contender. His 2007 campaign kind of ruined his 2008 campaign. No running back should have an easy time coming back from carrying the ball 416 times. Especially if the following season leaves you with a terrible offensive line. If Johnson is retained and the Chiefs work on some interior line help, Johnson will be able to pound the ball again. Add in that Jamaal Charles waits in the wings and you have a scary RBBC
- Denver>>> What Denver found in Peyton Hillis was a gem. He rushed for nearly 350 yards in six games and caught the ball for another 180. Add in that they have Selvin Young, Correl Buckhalter, and Ryan Torain waiting to rip it up and we could see the Bronco's of old soon. Except their list of running backs is an IR list waiting to happen
- Denver>>> Without a doubt Denver wins. Cutler only went down 11 times last season and their O-line made a bunch of unknown running backs look like legitimate starters. They also sent Casey Weigmann and Ryan Clady to the Pro Bowl. However this unit needs to get young if the Bronco's are going to ride their offenses recent success into the future
- San Diego>>> Theres a huge fall off o talent on the O-line after Denver but San Diego definitely comes in second but just as the best of the worse. San Diego's line would be a lot better if their starters could stay healthy. Mike Goff's contract year got ruined for this very reason. This unit is very young (Goff excluded) and will be the staple of San Diego's offense in the future
- Kansas City>>> Basically the only reason why Kansas City comes in before Oakland is because we have Branden Albert. Brian Waters may be gone but even if he stays he isn't a long term solution as he's due for retirement in 3-4 years.
- Oakland>>> Easily the worst unit in the AFC west, possibly the NFL. Because of the dismal offensive line play analyst and spectators have been unable to judge the ceiling for Darren McFadden and Jamarcus Russel. Makes you respect their running backs a lot more.
- San Diego>> You gotta believe that with Vincent Jackson, Chris Chambers, and Antonio Gates all coming off the same side of the ball teams get scared. Not to mention both Sproles and Tomlinson are excellent recievers coming out of the backfield. However, Chambers is due for retirement soon and Jackson will never be a true #1 he needs talent across of him to be effective.
- Denver>> I so badly want to put Kansas City here but I can't because of Brandon Marshall. Although Marshall has character issues it doesn't revoke his title as the most talented receiver in the AFC west. Not to mention, all the running backs in Denver's stable are all effective receivers out of the backfield and Scheffler as a TE has been phenomenal. Brandon Stokely is an awesome #3 option but lines up at #2 and does well.
- Kansas City>>> Seriously? Third in every category? Well that's where we belong. Despite the emergence of Mark Bradley and the signing of Devard Darling Kansas City's only legitimate receiving threats are Dwayne Bowe and Tony Gonzalez. Gonzalez may depart soon but he won't do so without leaving a replacement, Brad Cottam looks to be a legitimate force at TE. Jamaal Charles is also young and has proved that he could catch the ball out of the backfield and take it the distance. Considering we picked up Todd Haley (who is a genius WR coach) Kansas City could do some damage at this position in the future.
- Oakland>>> If you were to gather the entire Oakland roster (except Jamarcus Russel) and say "if you had a thousand yard receiving season please stand!" The whole room would remain sitting. If you sat in a room with Oakland's starting receivers (Ronald Curry and Javon Walker) and asked them if they had gained HALF a thousand yards COMBINED last season they would say no. The only legitimate receiving threat Oakland boasts is their running backs and Zack Miller. However, in this draft it looks like Oakland will have the option of picking up Michael Crabtree, wont that be scary? The past three years the best players at QB, RB, and WR respectively in each of the drafts will have wound up on Oakland's roster if they draft Crabtree this year. Don't rule out T.O as a Raider next year either.
Well there it is my AFC West offensive assessment. I'll be posting a defense edition soon so look out for me! Please if you disagree tell me I love the conversation...
This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.