Originally written on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 7/8/12

The AFC West has been viewed as that of a ‘weak’ division the past few years. This is mostly attributed to the fact that the division hasn’t made it far into the playoffs in the last couple years.

This may be a common misconception held by NFL fans around the league. The AFC West may in fact be the most competitive division in football today.

Last year, there was a three-way overall record tie for first place in the West at 8-8 (Denver, San Diego, And Oakland) with Kansas City not too far behind at 7-9. Beyond that, every team in the west finished with an even 3-3 divisional record.

Chargers division losses were determined by no more than 7 points.

With the teams in the West maintaining their team for another year, the competition will be pretty much the same as last year.

San Diego went through a huge makeover of their team, adding several new expected starters on both sides of the ball. Where do the Chargers stack up with these teams?

The Denver Broncos will be the Chargers main problem this year I believe, adding free agency gem and Hall of Fame Quarterback Peyton Manning. Manning will no doubt elevate the young and talented Bronco offense.

However, the Chargers main focus this offseason was to improve defensively, adding much needed depth and speed to their defensive line and linebacker core.

This will cause a lot of issues for Manning. Manning has dealt with pressure from teams like the Houston Texans with Mario Williams, but Manning will experience a new kind of pressure this year.

Nevertheless, expect the Broncos and Chargers to battle for the AFC West title and spot for the playoffs.

This doesn’t mean I’m discounting the viability of Oakland or Kansas City winning the division, just based on the talent and coach’s, I think it will come down to Denver and San Diego. 

Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.

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