The defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs are heavily favored to win the AFC West again this season. The Chiefs went 12-4 last season and they were perfect in the division, going 6-0, outscoring opponents by an average margin of 29-11.
It has been all Kansas City in the AFC West the last four years, as the Chiefs have won the division title every time. Is there any chance for the other three teams in 2020? Let’s look at AFC West odds and each of the four teams.
2020 AFC West Odds
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Kansas City Chiefs -515
The Chiefs have been completely dominant in the division of late, winning 27 of the last 30. They destroyed the Raiders, Broncos, and Chargers last NFL season, winning by a combined 176-66. "Let's be honest, the entire league is chasing the Kansas City Chiefs,” Raiders general manager Mike Mayock said to the media, "But we're in the same division. They keep getting faster and more athletic, more dynamic every time you turn around. Other teams have to do the same.”
The Chiefs have the top quarterback in the league in Patrick Mahomes and an offense that could be even better this season with the addition of running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire who Kansas City took in the first round of the NFL Draft. He is known as a pass-catching back and the Chiefs were just 25th in the league last season in yards per catch from their running backs. The Chiefs return almost everyone from last year’s squad, so there is no reason to think Kansas City won’t win at least 10 games this season and take the AFC West once again.
Los Angeles Chargers +955
The AFC West is the Chiefs and then everyone else. The Chargers are actually second in terms of odds at almost 10-1. The Chargers were just 5-11 last season and now they have a new starting quarterback as gone is Philip Rivers. That sounds bad, but Rivers cost the team more games than he won. Tyrod Taylor takes over as the starter until first-round pick Justin Herbert is ready. The Chargers made some nice additions in the offseason getting Bryan Bulaga, Chris Charris, and Linval Joseph. They did lose Melvin Gordon, but he was overpaid and oftentimes hurt, so the loss is not huge.
The Chargers won just five games a year ago and they could be undervalued entering this NFL season. Taylor is a quarterback who doesn’t make many mistakes and if the defense is decent, the Chargers could be a surprise team this season. Los Angeles won’t miss Gordon, as Austin Ekeler is better and true fans won’t miss Rivers who continually gave games away.
Denver Broncos +990
The Broncos went 7-9 last season and it is hard to get a read on what this team will do in 2020. The team did add Melvin Gordon from the Chargers, but whether he upgrades the running game is debatable. The team did get a good receiver in the draft in Jerry Jeudy, so he should help out the offense. The key for Denver is second year quarterback Drew Lock who must show he is capable of being a franchise quarterback.
The defense for Denver is as much of a question mark as the offense. The team let Chris Harris getaway, so they have a huge hole at cornerback. The team still has Von Miller, but he has not played nearly as well in the past couple of years as he did early in his career.
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Las Vegas Raiders +1220
The Raiders will be moving to Las Vegas this season and they hope to improve on last year’s 7-9 record. Head coach Jon Gruden continues to hope that veteran players can turn his team around, as he added Marcus Mariota to give Derek Carr some competition at quarterback and he added Jason Witten from Dallas. The team did take Henry Ruggs, the speedy wide receiver in the first round, but they bypassed better receivers in Jeudy and Lamb to do so.
The Raiders are not going to win with the current leadership at the top of their organization. Gruden was a very good coach many years ago, but he is no longer a master on the sideline and he is not even the biggest problem. Mike Mayock is the general manager and he simply isn’t going to make enough good decisions to get this franchise turned around.
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