Four players to watch

December, 18, 2008
12/18/08
11:00
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

Here are four players I look forward to watching play in week 16 AFC West action:

Jay Cutler, Denver Broncos: The pressure is on Cutler to seal the deal in the AFC West. All Denver has to do is win once to clinch the AFC West title. It is up to Cutler to lead Denver over visiting Buffalo. Denver plays well when Cutler plays well. He needs to wrap up the division for his team.

Justin Miller, Oakland Raiders: Miller has returned touchdowns in back-to-back games. Claimed off waivers from the Jets in November, Miller joins Oakland teammate Johnnie Lee Higgins in history. Last month, Higgins returned punts in back-to-back games. They are the only teammates to accomplish the feat. Can Miller do it again against Houston?

Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers: Can Rivers carry the Chargers on his back again? He better. The Chargers are done in the AFC West if they lose at Tampa Bay on Sunday. Rivers has to have another big game. He was special in a huge comeback win at Kansas City on Sunday. Rivers willed that win. He needs to do it again.

Tyler Thigpen, Kansas City Chiefs: Thigpen is playing for his career in Kansas City. He has been decent this season. But he needs to show he can win and impress a new GM who will be coming in. Kansas City has blown five late leads in the past eight games. That, of course, isn't Thigpen's problem. But winning quarterbacks win games. Thigpen has to find a way to lead Kansas City over Miami on Sunday.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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