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Who Will Win The AFC West?

It’s no secret that the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs are the favorites to win the AFC West in 2020. But in a division defined by longstanding and bitter rivalries, the other three teams are going to do their best to make sure the Chiefs don’t have an easy time getting back to the promised land.

Denver Broncos

Denver enters 2020 with +900 odds to win the AFC and +5000 Super Bowl odds, according to DraftKings. In theory, the Broncos could be an intriguing dark horse pick this year, depending on how you feel about Drew Lock.The Broncos should be an NFL public betting favorite coming into the year with all the hype surrounding them. The Broncos were 4-1 with Lock starting late in 2019 with the former Missouri gunslinger flashing plenty of promise. However, Denver’s offensive line was dreadful last season and will have a rookie at center in Lloyd Cushenberry. The Broncos are also incredibly young at wide receiver, although the group is loaded with talent.

Meanwhile, the Denver defense could be an X-factor this year. The Broncos have remained strong on that side of the ball ever since they won the Super Bowl a few years ago. They added lineman Jurrell Casey and cornerback A.J. Bouye over the offseason. The pass-rushing duo of Von Miller and Bradley Chubb could also be dangerous, but only if the Broncos can play with a lead more often than last year.

Kansas City Chiefs

Everything you need to know about the Chiefs you probably already know. They have the best Super Bowl odds at +600 and are an insane -455 to win the AFC West, by far the best NFL odds of any division champion. Needless to say, it’s all about Patrick Mahomes, who is an MVP and a Super Bowl winner at (checks notes) age 24.

Outside of a Super Bowl hangover, the question is whether the Kansas City defense can be more of an asset and less of a liability in 2020. For what it’s worth, the Chiefs gave up a respectable 19.3 points per game last year. A similar performance this year should be more than enough for Mahomes and the K.C. offense to keep the Chiefs among the NFL’s elite.

Las Vegas Raiders

During their first season in Vegas, the Raiders have +1200 odds to win the AFC West, the longest odds within the division. Jon Gruden’s team is also +6600 to win the Super Bowl. Derek Carr remains the quarterback, although there isn’t a ton of certainty over his future. With the Raiders adding rookie wide receivers Henry Ruggs and Bryan Edwards, Carr should be in a better position to succeed in 2020. Keep in mind he was a Pro Bowler not too long ago. With Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas is likely to have a stable running game, which should help.

For Gruden, it’s all about improving the defense that gave up over 26 points per game last year. While they didn’t make a big splash, the Raiders signed several mid-level veterans to help reinforce their defense. Of course, there’s a lot of work to do if Las Vegas is going to contain Mahomes and the Chiefs, among the other teams on their schedule.

Los Angeles Chargers

It’s a new era for the Chargers, who enter 2020 with +4500 Super Bowl odds and a +800 moneyline to win the AFC West, which gives them the second-best odds in the division. With Philip Rivers gone, Tyrod Taylor will begin the season as the starting quarterback. He’s proven that he can get a team to the playoffs, doing so in Buffalo. But Taylor needs a strong supporting cast around him to make it happen.

Last year, the Chargers were abysmal at running the ball and a tick below-average defensively. There might be only so much the Chargers can do to improve their rushing attack, especially since Taylor isn’t a threat to push the ball down the field. However, the Los Angeles defense looks solid on paper if everyone stays healthy, which could help keep the Chargers relevant in the playoff picture.

Chargers WR Mike Williams Has a Shoulder Sprain

Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams is considered week-to-week after suffering a sprained AC joint in his shoulder during Sunday’s practice, according to ESPN and multiple reports.

Williams is expected to be ready for the Chargers’ regular-season opener against the Bengals on Sept. 13, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Williams’ injury was first reported Monday by NFL Network.

Williams suffered the injury when he landed on his shoulder after attempting to make a diving catch Sunday.

Joey Bosa Supports DE Melvin Ingram Wanting a New Deal from the Chargers

The Chargers avoided a potential distraction when they re-signed one of their Pro Bowl defensive ends this month.

That move, however, led to another potential distraction regarding their other Pro Bowl defensive end, Jeff Miller of the Los Angeles Times reports.

Melvin Ingram attended the team’s second padded practice of training camp Tuesday in Costa Mesa but again did not participate in drills.

“We’ve talked a little bit and all I have to say is I’m going to support him,” said Joey Bosa, the Chargers’ other defensive star. “He’s going to make the best decision for him and his family. I have faith in him that he’s going to make the right decisions.”

Entering the final season of a four-year, $64-million contract he signed in June 2017, Ingram is now dissatisfied with his deal, particularly in light of the what Bosa just received.

At 31, he can become an unrestricted free agent next year. The Chargers have several other pending big-name free agents, a situation that further clouds Ingram’s future with the team.

“At the end of the day, it is a business and he has to take care of himself,” Bosa said. “I think he would love to play with us. He wants to be out there. But he’s gotta handle business.”

Check Out the Preview of HBO’s “Hard Knocks” Episode Two Featuring the Chargers

It’s episode two of the 2020 version of “Hard Knocks” on HBO tonight featuring the Chargers and Rams.

Veterans spend rare down time getting to know each other better and rookies push for any chance to prove themselves worthy of making the team.

Here’s a preview:

“Hard Knocks” on HBO Featuring the Chargers Debuts Tonight

Tonight is the debut of the HBO series “Hard Knocks” for the 2020 season, and this year is unlike any others as the show will not just focus on one team but two – the Chargers and the Rams.

Here’s a preview of the show tonight:

Chargers 2020 Schedule Out, Home Opener Vs Champion Chiefs

The Bolts 2020 schedule is out, and the team will open up on the road against first overall pick Joe Burrow and the Bengals.

In week two the team will play the Chiefs at home as they open their new stadium. Here’s the complete schedule for 2020.

at Cincinnati Bengals – Sunday, Sept. 13, 1:05 p.m. PT
Kansas City Chiefs – Sunday, Sept. 20, 1:25 p.m. PT
Carolina Panthers – Sunday, Sept. 27, 1:05 p.m. PT
at Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Sunday, Oct. 4, 10 a.m. PT
at New Orleans Saints – Monday, Oct. 12, 5:15 p.m. PT*
New York Jets – Sunday, Oct. 18, 1:05 p.m. PT
at Miami Dolphins – Sunday, Oct. 25, 10 a.m. PT
Jacksonville Jaguars – Sunday, Nov. 1, 1:05 p.m. PT
Las Vegas Raiders – Sunday, Nov. 8, 1:05 p.m. PT
at Denver Broncos – Sunday, Nov. 22, 1:05 p.m. PT
at Buffalo Bills – Sunday, Nov. 29, 10 a.m. PT
New England Patriots – Sunday, Dec. 6, 1:25 p.m. PT
Atlanta Falcons – Sunday, Dec. 13, 1:25 p.m. PT
at Las Vegas Raiders, Thursday, Dec. 17, 5:20 p.m. PT*
Denver Broncos, Dec. 26 or 27, time TBD
at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, Jan. 3, 10 a.m. PT

*Denotes prime-time game

An Educated Guess at What the 2020 Chargers Schedule Could Look Like

The 2020 Los Angeles Chargers schedule will be released in a televised event on Thursday night, and while we already know who the Chargers will go up against and where, we don’t know in what order, or what may or may not be on prime time.

Here are the teams the Chargers will play:

Home: Chiefs, Raiders, Broncos, Patriots, Jets, Falcons, Panthers, Jaguars
Away: Chiefs, Raiders, Broncos, Bills, Dolphins, Saints, Buccaneers, Bengals

Today we give a reminder of the teams that we will see the Chargers in the 2020 season, and we give our guess in what order we will see them in.

(A quick sidebar – we are moving forward with this schedule as if the season will start and play out on time, with no issues due to the covid-19 pandemic).

Sunday 9/13 Week One vs Denver
Sunday 9/20 Week Two at Buffalo
Sunday 9/27 Week Three vs Atlanta
Sunday 10/4 Week Four at Cincinnati
Sunday 10/11 Week Five at Las Vegas
Thursday 10/14 Week Six vs New England (Thursday Night Football)
Sunday 10/25 Week Seven vs New York Jets
Sunday 11/01 Week Eight at New Orleans
Sunday 11/08 Week Nine BYE WEEK
Sunday 11/15 Week Ten at Miami
Sunday 11/22 Week Eleven vs Las Vegas
Sunday 11/30 Week Twelve vs Carolina
Sunday 12/06 Week Thirteen at Denver
Sunday 12/13 Week Fourteen vs Kansas City
Sunday 12/20 Week Fifteen at Tampa Bay
Sunday 12/27 Week Sixteen vs Jacksonville
Sunday 01/03 Week Seventeen at Kansas City

Pep Hamilton Joining the Chargers as the Team’s New QB Coach

The Chargers are hiring Pep Hamilton as quarterbacks coach, a person familiar with the negotiations told Joe Reedy of the Associated Press.

The person spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity because the deal, first reported by The Athletic, has not been officially announced by the team.

Hamilton was head coach of the XFL’s DC Defenders before the league ended its season after five weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The XFL announced a couple of weeks later that it was suspending operations. Prior to joining the XFL, Hamilton was Michigan’s assistant head coach and passing game coordinator in 2017-18.

Hamilton’s last NFL job was in Cleveland as assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach in 2016. He was also Indianapolis’ offensive coordinator for three seasons (2013-15) along with previous stints with the New York Jets, San Francisco, Chicago and at Stanford.