Breaking down the Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers and Oakland Raiders heading into the new season.
The AFC West may be the division that has experienced the most change in teams’ most important areas.
The Los Angeles Chargers were already the most talented roster in the field, but their continuity should give them another advantage in the battle for the division crown.
Learn more about the teams with our AFC West team guides.
Head coach: Vance Joseph
Star player: Von Miller
Last season: 5-11
Key ins: Case Keenum (Minnesota), Marquette King (Oakland), Adam Jones (Cincinnati), Jared Veldheer (Arizona), Tramaine Brock (Minnesota), Clinton McDonald (Tampa Bay), Su’a Cravens (Washington), Bradley Chubb (rookie), Courtland Sutton (rookie), Royce Freeman (rookie)
Key outs: C.J. Anderson (Carolina), Aqib Talib (LA Rams), Allen Barbre (free agent)
Strengths: Edge rushing will be scary with Miller, Chubb, Shane Ray and others.
Weaknesses: Passing attack is improved but still has question marks.
Verdict: If their offence can get in the same ballpark as their defence, they may surprise.
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
Head coach: Andy Reid
Star player: Eric Berry
Last season: 10-6, lost in Wild Card round
Key ins: Sammy Watkins (LA Rams), Kendall Fuller (Washington), Orlando Scandrick (Washington), Anthony Hitchens (Dallas), Breeland Speaks (rookie), Derrick Nnadi (rookie)
Key outs: Alex Smith (Washington), Tamba Hali (free agent), Bennie Logan (Tennessee), Albert Wilson (Miami), Marcus Peters (LA Rams), Derrick Johnson (Oakland), Zach Fulton (Houston)
Strengths: Have a high-powered offence with multiple weapons.
Weaknesses: Could struggle to defend against the pass, even with Berry’s playmaking.
Verdict: Should be involved in plenty of shootouts.
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS
Head coach: Anthony Lynn
Star player: Keenan Allen
Last season: 9-7
Key ins: Mike Pouncey (Miami), Virgil Green (Denver), Derwin James (rookie), Uchenna Nwosu (rookie), Justin Jones (rookie)
Key outs: Matt Slauson (Indianapolis), Jason Verrett (injury), Hunter Henry (injury), Tre Boston (Arizona)
Strengths: From top to bottom, have one of the most talented rosters in the league.
Weaknesses: Preseason injuries have already brought their depth into play and dampened their outlook.
Verdict: Everything is in place for them to be contenders, as long as they stay mostly healthy and Philip Rivers doesn’t completely fall off.
Head coach: Jon Gruden
Star player: Rodney Hudson
Last season: 6-10
Key ins: Jordy Nelson (Green Bay), Doug Martin (Tampa Bay), Rashaan Melvin (Indianapolis), A.J. McCarron (Buffalo), Derrick Johnson (Kansas City), Marcus Gilchrist (Houston), Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (NY Giants) Kolton Miller (rookie), P.J. Hall (rookie)
Key outs: Khalil Mack (Chicago), Michael Crabtree (Baltimore), Marquette King (Denver), Cordarrelle Patterson (New England), Sean Smith (free agent)
Strengths: Interior offensive line is as good as it gets.
Weaknesses: Tied for second-fewest takeaways last year (14).
Verdict: Gruden was gone for a long time and it could show.