AFC West: 2013 Week 3 NFL Buzz

Locker Room Buzz: Denver Broncos

September, 24, 2013
DENVER -- Observed in the locker room after the Denver Broncos' 37-21 win against the Oakland Raiders:

Closing in: You don’t need to be around Champ Bailey for very long to understand how difficult it is for the 15-year veteran not to be on the field when the Broncos (3-0) have so much going for them. The cornerback, who injured his left foot in a preseason loss to Seattle, struggled a bit in warm-ups Monday, and the Broncos decided to hold him out of a third consecutive regular-season game. After the victory, though, Bailey maintained he’s “close’’ to being back. But for a player who’s never played in a Super Bowl, it’s clear Bailey wants to join what is clearly a team with February potential.

Lost opportunity: Rookie running back Montee Ball, who was put into Monday’s win to help close things out down the stretch, lost his second fumble of the season. And given Ronnie Hillman's 66 yards on nine carries, it could push Ball down the depth chart in a rotation where carries are already difficult to come by.

Webster comes up big: He was an unheralded pick in April’s draft, but rookie cornerback Kayvon Webster continues to impress the Broncos with his poise and preparation. The key: pop quizzes from his teammates. “Sometimes they just start asking me questions to see if I know what we’re doing," Webster said, "sometimes even when the coaches aren’t around.’’

Ihenacho tweaks ankle: Broncos pulled safety Duke Ihenacho, who injured his right ankle in the Week 2 victory over the Giants, out of Monday’s game in the second half. Ihenacho tweaked the ankle late against the Raiders, but looked to be moving pretty well after the game.
Observed in the locker room after the San Diego Chargers' 20-17 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Sunday.

On to the next: After his team squandered a fourth-quarter lead for the second time in three games, San Diego running back Danny Woodhead told the Chargers Radio Network he won’t spend time worrying about what could have been. “I think that’s how it has to be, because we’ve got to get ready for the next one,” Woodhead said. “That’s part of the NFL. You can’t sit and whine or be mad about it. You’re not happy, but you’ve got to move on and get better at the things that we’ve got to get better at.”

Prayers unanswered: San Diego tight end Ladarius Green had a solid day, finishing with two receptions for 48 yards, including a 34-yard catch. However, Green told the Chargers Radio Network that he had his eyes elsewhere when Tennessee quarterback Jake Locker found Justin Hunter for the go-ahead score. “I honestly wasn’t looking up at it,” Green said. “I had my head down, praying.”

Heads-up play: Tennessee tight end Delanie Walker knew he should have made the catch over the middle that bounced off his hands on the final drive. But with San Diego defensive back Marcus Gilchrist taking in the ball for a drive-ending interception, Walker quickly atoned for his mistake by knocking the ball out of Gilchrist's hands. Walker’s heads-up play gave Tennessee the chance for the go-ahead score four plays later. “That’s a huge play. If he quits on that play, feels sorry for himself because he dropped it, the game is over,” Locker said.

Locker Room Buzz: Kansas City Chiefs

September, 20, 2013
PHILADELPHIA – Observed in the locker room after the Kansas City Chiefs' 26-16 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Reid’s homecoming: With Thursday's game over, Chiefs coach Andy Reid acknowledged that coming back to Philadelphia, where he led the Eagles the previous 14 seasons, was special. “I really didn’t think much about it until the game was over,’’ said Reid, who received a nice ovation from fans when he came out on the field before the game. “I saw that and I appreciated that."

Avery saves passing game: The Chiefs traded unproductive starting wide receiver Jon Baldwin during the preseason, in part to make room in the starting lineup for Donnie Avery -- who had seven catches for 141 yards Thursday. Avery burned the Eagles several times by catching short crossing patterns and taking them for long gains. “He gives us great balance,’’ quarterback Alex Smith said. “He really complements Dwayne (Bowe) on the other side."

Injury report: Starting left guard Jeff Allen left the game with a strained groin muscle. Cornerback Brandon Flowers, who was on the injury report all week, re-injured his knee.