AFC West, The Raider, Bronco, Charger, Chief smoothie

Mike SommersContributor ISeptember 17, 2008

Ahhhhh, the AFC West. The division that during the off-season had only one outcome for its inhabitants.

The Chargers: Picked by all the media and generally thought to win the division hands down and running away with it.

The Broncos: Picked to finish second behind the spectacular play and dominance of the Chargers, possibly a playoff team.

The Chiefs and the Raiders: Both of these teams were picked to hold down the basement and fight to be the worst in the division.

OH MY!! As the Season is under way we find a definite surprise within the division. The surprise (not to those Raider fans posting on the Fox Raider site) is that the Bolts are NOT in the lead or dominating the division. Not only are the Bolts not winning but are currently posting an 0-2 record!

Although this is not what the media expected, it is not a new result early in the Norv Turner coaching era for the Bolts. As you recall last season (and LT's contribution) the Bolts started out horrible. The big question is: Can the Bolts repeat last year and improve from this slow start and make the playoffs? As a matter of fact the current play of Phillip Rivers is saving this team from having no hope to recover, as he is having a great season stat wise.

The biggest shock within the division is the suddenly fantastic Denver Broncos.

Many player changes (loss of their star kicker, a key running back, and some veteran defensive players) over the off-season had given many the impression that the Broncos were falling apart. But nooooo, fantastic coaching, superb play by Cutler and the emergence of rookie Eddie Royal, have giving the Broncos a 2-0 record early in the season. Both of the wins had great offensive production and put many points on the board vs the division rival Chargers and Raiders...... They look like the team the Chargers were supposed to be.

The Chiefs and the Raiders were both picked to not do much this season.

The Chiefs have completely started the rebuilding process and filled their team with rookies. Although a good showing vs the Patriots gave hope, the Chiefs have found a way to lose 2 in a row that included being dominated by the Raiders. Their contention for the bottom of the division seem probable this season.

The Oakland Raiders, ah yes, my Oakland Raiders. The team that is picked to be one of the worst in the NFL by many in the media.

Coming off a 4-12 record the Raiders have made many changes to the team and most changes are considered upgrades. Well the team started the season vs the Denver Broncos which manhandled the Raiders and beat them badly. The team seemed out of sorts and completely over matched by the Broncos. With some extreme coaching drama in between game one and two, the Raiders seemed to have changed. In game two versus the lowly Chiefs, the Raiders looked completely different and a much better team. How good is the question.

With the Bronco explosion, the Charger implosion, the Chief rebuild and the Raiders Jekyll and Hyde play, what will be the final outcome of this division.

Are the Broncos' that good?

Are the Chargers that bad?

Will the Chiefs rookies mature quickly?

Which team will show up for the Raiders?

Only the season will tell.