AFC West 2020 Division Preview
Kansas City Chiefs
Coming off the super bowl last year, the Chiefs are the favorites to win the super bowl again this year. Overall, they got better this season, but still have some missing pieces. First off, I LOVE that they drafted Clyde Edwards-Helaire, I loved it so much that I even drafted him in my dynasty league. He wasn't my number one rated running back, but he was the best fit for their system. I actually compared him to a shorter Kareem Hunt coming out of the draft this year. The two holes in this team are at corner and linebacker. No matter what this team is going to be awesome, I just could see this lack of depth hurting them in the future. Patrick Mahomes was worth every penny in that $503 million dollar deal and will probably be the favorites every game, no matter who they're playing. A player who I'm looking to step up for the Chiefs this year is Mecole Hardman, I'd love to see him take on a Deebo type of role for this team. The Chiefs should be amazing this year and are the favorites to win the super bowl in 2020.
Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers are an über talented team that is about a year away from being super bowl contenders. Justin Herbert is the man to watch. I wasn't super high on him coming out of Oregon, but he has the potential to be really good with the Chargers. The Chargers made two really good free agent acquisitions with Brian Bulaga and Linval Joseph. Trading for Trai Turner was also an amazing move. This offensive line should be the best it's been in years. I'm wishing the best for Tyrod Taylor, I just can't see Justin Herbert not starting a few games this season. He's a guy who will get better every game and just needs some experience. The Chargers are in arguably the toughest division in the NFL which is going to make it hard for them to make the playoffs in 2020. I believe Austin Ekeler needs a complimentary back which the Chargers are missing. This defense is going to be really good though. With the addition of Kenneth Murray, they now have a leader at every level of the defense. Murray will be in the running for defensive rookie of the year and should make an instant impact. Derwin James is also coming back this year and they signed Chris Harris Jr. who is a baller every year. The Chargers are a really good team who are about one year away.
Las Vegas Raiders
It is still weird for me to say Las Vegas Raiders, but the Raiders should be really good this season. I love the mentality Derek Carr has taken this offseason, he's playing mad and he's playing with a chip on his shoulder. Henry Ruggs is either going to be really really good this season or he won't make an impact what so ever. I'm betting that he'll be really really good. Ruggs has Tyreek-type of potential and the fact that he's been showing out in training camp makes me really excited. I see Josh Jacobs being a top 3 running back in the NFL this season. He's completely healthy, last season he was banged up and he has a complete season under his belt. He understands the pace of the game and he truly knows out to set up blocks with his offensive line. The Raiders have three tight ends who can get some action, so I expect a lot of heavier personnel sets from them this year. Another rookie who I'm really excited about is Lynn Bowden who will be the spark on this team. He will be their Taysom Hill. Defensively, I love the addition of Corey Littleton. Littleton is a guy who will be able to run with Travis Kelce or Austin Ekeler. I'm not saying stop them, but he'll be in position to make plays. Trayvon Mullen got a lot better as the season went on and now he's going to be put in a position where he has to guard the number one receiver. Their number one player on the defense has to be Maxx Crosby. He's going to ball out this season once he recovers from the corona virus. I'm looking forward to the breakout of Jonathan Abram, he was my favorite player coming out of the draft in 2019 and now that he's healthy I think he's going to pop off. The Raiders have to make the playoffs, this is a no excuses year for Vegas. This team is really young, but I expect them to be really good.
The Broncos are my sleeper team to win the super bowl in 2020. This team's fate will be determined by Drew Lock's development. I see Drew Lock as a guy who will learn and get better, but if the game doesn't slow down for him he will get flustered. I think that the Broncos have the potential to be the super young, fun team in 2020. Jerry Jeudy was my number two receiver coming out of the draft and he's the perfect compliment to Courtland Sutton. I think this year, Courtland Sutton is going to be a top 10 receiver in the NFL. KJ Hamler is going to be that versatile number 3 receiver. He's going to provide that spark for Denver. He's the guy who can flip the momentum, and that's what you need if you want to make a super bowl run. Not to mention, they have arguably the best running back core. Phillip Lindsay and Melvin Gordon are both starting guys who can tote the rock. Royce Freeman is also a solid third down back. Defensively, Bradley Chubb is a guy who I'm excited to see come back. I'm excited about year two of him and Von Miller, but the difference maker is going to be Jurrell Casey. He will be their version of Derek Wolfe, he's a different player but that inside presence is going to make a difference. Justin Simmons will also be a dominant force. He's my pick for all pro free safety in 2020. For all of those reasons, I see Denver being a lock for the playoffs in 2020.