A weekly update on the AFC West, to keep up with the Oakland Raiders and the rest of the division.
At about 3:45 EST Sunday, November 13, the Raiders were looking good to extend their AFC West lead while sipping cocktails and chasing their kids during their bye week.
About 10 minutes later the football gods cruelly pulled the rug out from the NFC South — and the Raiders first-place stranglehold — and the Broncos and Chiefs walked away with improbable victories. The Chiefs win vaulted them above the Raiders in the standings via tie-breaker. JBB’s editor Nick Hjeltness breaks it down nicely here.
The AFC West and NFC East are emerging as the class divisions of the NFL. In both conferences the second and third place teams in those divisions occupy the current wild card positions. The Chargers are the only team of eight in the two divisions with a losing record.
The Dallas Cowboys are two games up on the Giants in the NFC East and looking fairly unstoppable. The Chiefs are tied with the Raiders and one game up on the Broncos, and the three teams look fairly evenly matched.
The schedule makers saw this coming. Three of the Raiders final four games are against the Chiefs, Broncos and Chargers — all on the road. The Broncos and Raiders end the season in Denver. And the Chiefs also play three of their final four games against their divisional rivals, albeit they have two of those games at home.
It’s going to be a fun end to the season, and for the first time in a long time, the Raiders are right in the mix.