NFL Season Preview: Kansas City Leads AFC West, Chargers Close Behind

Kansas City has its eyes on the Super Bowl again this year. At +160 to win their division, the Chiefs are tied with the Baltimore Ravens as having the shortest odds to win their division in the AFC. But several teams could bump them from the number one spot.

QB Patrick Mahomes
QB Patrick Mahomes riles up the crowd during an NFL preseason football game against the Chicago Bears on Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022. Mahomes and the Chiefs have their sights set on the Super Bowl again this year. (Image: AP Photo)

The AFC West, on paper, is the best division in all of football. Each team has the highest expectations for the upcoming season, from the quarterbacks to the storylines. The division includes elite quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes in Kansas City, Justin Herbert in Los Angeles, Derek Carr in Las Vegas, and now Russell Wilson in Denver, making the divisional matchups must-watch television.

That speaks to how good the top of the division is. But in this case, it also speaks to the bottom’s talent. The Chiefs are now in chasing mode, as not only has their division gotten tighter, but the Buffalo Bills have overtaken them as the team to beat in the AFC.

At +1000, the Chiefs are the third favorite to win the Super Bowl this season, behind the Bills and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and are tied with the defending champion Los Angeles Rams.

Chargers Poised For Takeover

The Los Angeles Chargers are the second favorite to come out on top of the AFC West entering the new season. Justin Herbert has another season under his belt and has proven he can compete with all the league’s top quarterbacks.

At +225 to win the division, the Chargers could be in a prime spot to knock off the Chiefs. But the division is stacked with talent, making it difficult to predict which team will be first and which will be fourth.

With odds of +1400 to win the Super Bowl, even playing in a division like this, anything other than a long playoff run will disappoint Chargers’ fans this season.

Wilson Debuts in Denver

The new kid on the block looking to shake up the division entirely is the addition of Russell Wilson to the Broncos in Denver.

Denver sits at +260 to win the AFC West, and it wouldn’t shock many people if they pulled it off.

Wilson got his wish granted in the off-season when the Seattle Seahawks shipped the 2013 Super Bowl champion to the Broncos. At +1500 to win the Super Bowl, three teams from the AFC West are in the top seven of all NFL teams to win the Super Bowl this year.

Raiders Bring in the Rear

Somebody had to bring up the rear in this division. In this case, it’s the Las Vegas Raiders. The Raiders almost took down the Bengals in the playoffs last season, but could not close the deal.

With Devante Adams joining Carr and the offense in Vegas, expectations have never been higher as the team settles into playing in Sin City. At +650 to win the division, it seems unlikely that the Raiders will be division champions. But they certainly are the best “worst” team in the league.

To win the Super Bowl, the Raiders have odds of +3500, also not that long for a last-place team. Don’t be shocked to see a few surprises in this division this season.

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