How I See It: AFC West Stock Watch

October, 6, 2010
10/06/10
1:01
PM ET
NFC Stock Watch: East | West | North | South AFC: East | West | North | South

FALLING

Denver Broncos running game: A season-long issue is getting worse. The Broncos had 19 yards on 20 carries at Tennessee. They are ranked No. 32 in the NFL in rushing. Denver is averaging 2.2 yards per carry and 55 yards on the ground per game. Denver is literally getting nothing from its ground game.

Oakland Raiders run defense: The Raiders spent a lot of time and resources on improving one of the worst run defenses in the league. Oakland has had its moments, but overall it is still an issue. After being benched to start the game, Houston’s Arian Foster ripped apart Oakland. He had 131 yards on 16 carries, adding a 74-yard touchdown run. Oakland is just not closing gaps well enough on a consistent basis.

Steve Gregory, San Diego Chargers, safety: The Chargers’ starting strong safety is suspended by the NFL for the next four games for using a performance-enhancing substance. Gregory said he did not knowingly take the substance. Paul Oliver will take the place of the play-making Gregory.

[+] EnlargeKyle Orton
Don McPeak/US PresswireThrough four games Kyle Orton has completed 118 of 175 passes for 1,419 yards.
RISING

Kyle Orton, Denver Broncos, quarterback: Orton is playing out of his mind. He is making up for Denver’s bad running game with stellar performances. He has thrown for 1,419 yards. It is the second highest yardage total after four games in the history of the NFL.

San Diego Chargers defense: The Chargers have allowed four touchdowns in four games. San Diego had nine sacks, including four by linebacker Shaun Phillips, in a win over Arizona. Like San Diego’s offense, its defense is ranked No. 1 in the NFL.

Zach Miller, Oakland Raiders, tight end: Miller is one of the best young offensive players in the league. He had 11 catches for 122 yards in a loss to Houston. Miller is a favorite target of Oakland quarterback Bruce Gradkowski and he is a great safety net for an offense that has an unreliable receiving crew.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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