2023 NFL Season Preview: AFC West Edition

The best division in football… ? That’s what the narrative was surrounding the AFC West going into last season. Man, did that let us down. But it was to be expected, the Raiders and Broncos have always been let-downs, and the Chargers are the definition of a let-down. The Chiefs have proved themselves as a potential dynasty, but as Stephen A. Smith said, can you really consider yourself a dynasty if you haven’t even won back-to-back championships?

Kansas City Chiefs: 1st

Patrick Mahomes is the dynasty. A generational, lifetime-defining quarterback who is chasing Tom Brady, already. Mahomes is turning 28 in just a few weeks, and that is usually when quarterbacks start to hit their prime. Isn’t that scary to think about? If Mahomes hasn’t hit his ceiling yet, then what is it? Can he get better? Probably not. I think he is maxed out, but that is because he is literally MAXED. OUT. Aside from him and obviously Travis Kelce, their offensive weapons are underwhelming. Isiah Pacheco is promising, but we said the same thing about Clyde-Edwards Helaire after his rookie season. Their offensive line is one of the top units in the league behind Creed Humphrey, Joe Thuney and Trey Smith on the interior. Something that really worries me is the hold-out of DT Chris Jones. He has yet to attend training camp as a full participant, and is looking for a new contract. Travis Kelce’s recent injury also worries me, but it’s the Chiefs, they will figure it out. 

Los Angeles Chargers: 2nd

The Chargers have been one of my favorite teams to watch over the past few years, because they always refuse to just dominate a team. They could one week hang 42 points on the Chiefs, but the next week get blown out by the Texans. It is a forever rollercoaster for the NFL’s equivalent to the Clippers, but they still have so much talent and so much offensive firepower for them to not finish second in this division. They will be a Wild Card team and they do have one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks in Justin Herbert. Their defense also features some crazy talent in Joey Bosa, Khalil Mack and Derwin James, but somehow they always suck. Whether it be injuries or some other outrageous storyline, expect the Chargers to have some sort of reason to not live up to their potential. Welcome back to Chargers football, do not stay awhile.

Denver Broncos: 3rd

I could see a world where the Broncos make the playoffs. Yes, Russell Wilson sucked last year, yes their offensive line is terrible, but Wilson has the reputation of a great quarterback in Seattle for a reason. He is good. He has a chance to prove it again this year. It’s his last chance. On the defensive end, Pat Surtain II is the best corner in football. Period. This year is a year of last chances for the Broncos, and honestly, I hate talking about them. Sean Payton is an overrated head coach, but he’s definitely better than Nathaniel Hackett was.

Las Vegas Raiders: 4th

What even happened to this team. It seems like every year they are cursed. They do have good players, but they break out at the worst possible times because their front office is terrible. Josh Jacobs is a prime example. For some reason, they declined his fifth-year option last year, and of course, he was the best running back in football. This year, they have recruited Jimmy Garoppolo to play quarterback, for some reason. Davante Adams remains, but their offense will fall apart if Jimmy can’t be even mediocre. Honestly, they could be a fun team, but they won’t because Raiders.

Those last two teams were hard to get through. But they won’t be for other teams. I feel like we’re in for another year of Chiefs dominance, but not when they play the Vikings. Skol.

Header Photo: Since 2018, these two right here have become a force to be reckoned with. If they keep on winning, they will one day rival duos like Rice and Montana. (Rick Scuteri/The Associated Press)

Write to Hayden Lee at

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