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Monday, November 17, 2008
Around the AFC West

By Bill Williamson
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

Denver

The Broncos' new running backs came through in Atlanta.

My take: A balanced offense helps Jay Cutler keep the mistakes down and makes him a very dangerous quarterback. The three-headed committee of Peyton Hillis, Tatum Bell and P.J. Pope must continue to play well. Selvin Young will also be in the mix when he returns from a groin injury.

Kansas City

The Chiefs couldn't score enough in a loss to New Orleans.

My take: Kansas City had ample chances to go score but they couldn't punch it into the end zone. That is a sign of a young team. Kansas City can't move the ball until it really has to move it. It's all a part of growing up in the NFL.

Oakland

Ronald Curry came through Sunday.

My take: This will be a big final six weeks for Curry this season. It looked like he'd surely be out the door after he lost his starting job earlier in the season. However, if Curry can finish strong, Oakland may decide to keep him. The Raiders need his production with Javon Walker out for season with an ankle injury.

San Diego

The Chargers' pass rush came alive in Pittsburgh.

My take: The Chargers are playing better on defense under new coordinator Ron Rivera who promised to be more aggressive. In the past six quarters, San Diego's defense has been very effective, allowing 17 points during that time span. The San Diego defense needs to be stout as the team tries to dig out of a hole in the AFC West.

Meanwhile, here are a few random AFC West tidbits:

Teams going from the Pacific to Eastern time zones are 0-14 this season with San Diego and Oakland adding to the total Sunday. Both the Raiders and the Chargers have one remaining game on the East Coast. They both play at Tampa Bay. San Diego visits Dec. 21 and Oakland goes to Tampa to end the season Dec. 28.

With Denver wining its past two games to get to 6-4, the chances of this division having a champion with a losing record looks much slimmer than it did two weeks ago.

It wouldn't be a shock of the Broncos' game at the New York Jets on Nov. 30 gets flexed to the Sunday evening game replacing the Bears' visit to Minnesota.