AFC West: A.J. Smith Terellle Pryor

AFC West Stock Watch

December, 26, 2012
12/26/12
8:00
AM ET
FALLING

Terrelle Pryor's chances of being a starter anytime soon: I disagreed with the Oakland Raiders' decision to use Matt Leinart instead of Pryor as Carson Palmer's injury replacement at the Carolina Panthers. They know what they have in Leinart. He’s a career backup. Why wouldn’t a four-win team see what they have in Pryor? I think the reality is clear -- Pryor must be nowhere near being considered a starter in Oakland. The team didn’t think he was ready to play in a meaningless game. He’s not going to be ready to take over an offense next season. There are many exciting young quarterbacks taking over this league. It doesn’t seem like Pryor, taken in the third-round of the supplemental draft in 2011, will be given the chance soon. Still, Oakland would be smart to let Pryor play Sunday in the season finale at San Diego just to see what he can do.

Chances the Kansas City Chiefs will keep their current brass: We all hear the rumors that Scott Pioli and Romeo Crennel are on their way out and we hear rumors of possible replacements. The Chiefs are 2-13 and it is becoming increasingly likely that ownership will feel it has no choice to make but to make sweeping changes.

The San Diego Chargers' chances for a top draft pick: The Chargers have won on the road in two of the past three weeks. They are now 6-9 and they are on pace for the No. 10 pick. A couple of weeks ago, it seemed like the Chargers could be poised for a top-five pick. That's no longer true.

RISING

Appreciation for Jamaal Charles: It’s a shame Charles’ wonderful comeback campaign is being lost in the misery of the Chiefs season. Charles has been spectacular. He has 1,456 yards this season and he is 12 yards from setting a personal season best. Charles has three runs of 80 yards or more this season and is tied for the most in an NFL season, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Charles is also the all-time NFL career leader in per carry average with 5.82 yards a carry. He is a tremendous player, and he is, by far, the best tailback in this division.

The 36-year-old Peyton Manning: According to ESPN Stats & Information, if Manning has three touchdown passes against the Chiefs on Sunday, he will set an NFL record for touchdown passes by a quarterback 36 years or older. Manning has 34 touchdown passes this season. Y.A. Tittle and Steve Young were both 36 when they tossed 36 touchdown passes.

San Diego rookie defensive lineman Kendall Reyes: There will be a new coach in San Diego next year and he will inherit some good young talent on defense. Reyes is one of them. The second-round pick had 3.5 sacks Sunday at the Jets and he has a chance to be a dominant player. The likely departing A.J. Smith gets dinged a lot, but Reyes could be a nice parting gift from Smith.

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