Friday, September 18, 2009
AFC West: Final Word
By Bill Williamson ESPN.com
Posted by ESPN.com’s Bill Williamson
Five nuggets of knowledge about this weekend's games:
AP Photo/Marcio Sanchez
Despite joining the Raiders just a few days before the game, Richard Seymour collected two sacks against San Diego.
Will former New England teammates get up close and personal?Matt Cassel had to deal with Richard Seymour in practice while the two were New England teammates. At least, back then Seymour wasn’t allowed to hit Cassel. Those days are over. If Cassel, who has been recovering from a knee injury, plays Sunday at home against the Raiders, Seymour will not be looking for a joyful reunion of former Patriots. Seymour will be coming after Cassel. Seymour had two sacks in his Oakland debut and will be looking to add to his total against a familiar face.
Somebody cover that guy: Notice to the league: Darren Sproles is really dangerous. You might want to account for him. The 5-foot-6 running back looms large for the Chargers. Baltimore will have to try to find a way to stop Sproles, who scored on a five-yard touchdown run to beat Oakland on Monday in the final seconds. He is also a major threat on returns. With LaDainian Tomlinson out because of an ankle injury, Sproles will be on the field often. The Ravens need to find a way to stop him.
Can the Chiefs’ 3-4 defense learn something from the Chargers? In their second game using the 3-4 defense, the Chiefs need to study what the Chargers did against Oakland in Week 1. San Diego has a 3-4 defense, so Kansas City will have something to work off of. San Diego played pretty well against the Raiders. But the Raiders had success passing to tight end Zach Miller in the middle of the field and running the ball up the gut. Perhaps the Chiefs can find something from the San Diego game film and learn from it.
McDaniels goes for home state sweep: Josh McDaniels is a proud native of Ohio. He has often credited his Canton, Ohio, roots for his football passion. McDaniels’ father was a wildly successful high school coach there and McDaniels said Ohio’s passion for football is part of his DNA. So, it would be a huge honor for McDaniels to register victories in his first two games as an NFL coach against the NFL’s two teams from the Buckeye State. The Broncos won at Cincinnati last week and they host Cleveland this week.
McFadden goes back to the scene of his best NFL moment: Oakland running back Darren McFadden has fond memories of Arrowhead Stadium. The No. 4 pick in the 2008 draft had his best NFL game last year (also in Week 2) in Kansas City. He had 164 yards rushing on 21 carries. McFadden then began dealing with a turf toe injurt. McFadden had a decent start to the season Monday with 68 yards on 17 carries. He is healthy and looking for a repeat performance in Kansas City.