While the Broncos travel east to face the New England Patriots in one of the most, if not the most, anticipated match ups of Week Five, the Kansas City Chiefs welcome the Baltimore Ravens to Arrowhead, while the San Diego Chargers head to the Big Easy to face Drew Bree’s and the winless New Orleans Saints on Sunday Night Football. The Oakland Raiders, after a dismal Week Four performance in Denver, get the week off before they travel to Atlanta to face the Falcons. Continue reading for my thoughts on the two other games that feature AFC West teams this week.
Baltimore Ravens at Kansas City Chiefs: On paper, the Baltimore Ravens should easily come into Arrowhead and beat the Chiefs, but this is the NFL and on any given Sunday, any team can beat another team. Given the Chiefs’ poor performance last week against the San Diego Chargers, they should be very motivated to right the ship, but I wouldn’t expect that to happen against the Ravens, who are clearly one of the upper tier teams in the league. Bronco fans know the importance of the quarterback and how often the performance of that one position can directly impact the outcome of a game. Matt Cassel is definitely struggling; facing a defense like the Ravens, football fans may see a repeat performance of last week by the Chiefs. As I wait for kickoff of the Bronco game, I will tune into this game and watch for a variety of reasons – will the Chiefs continue to spiral out of control toward the bottom of the AFC West, will ex-Bronco quarterback Brady Quinn finally get some playing time, and most importantly, what will the Broncos face not only when they battle the Chiefs two times this season, but also what challenge will they have in front of them when they travel to Baltimore in Week Fifteen?
San Diego Chargers at New Orleans Saints: If you look at the records of these two teams you may question if this game really warrants the Sunday Night Football slot and all the attention it receives. The Chargers enter the game atop the AFC West with a 3-1 record, while the Saints are still looking to stop their losing streak with a win, which would improve their record to 1-4. Given the Saints performance last Sunday in Green Bay, they definitely showed the league they still have fight left in them, despite the 28-27 loss to Green Bay. It appears to me that the Saints are close to breaking out and returning to their winning ways, which is what their fans have recently become to expect. What better stage to do it than Sunday Night Football. As a Bronco fan, I hope I’m right because if the Chargers lose, it will help our team. The Chargers, no doubt have to be very pleased where they find themselves one month into the season with only one loss and two of their three wins coming against teams in the division. This game will be interesting to watch because I believe it may answer two questions – are the Chargers as good as their record indicates, and are the Saints as bad as their record indicates? Like the Chiefs/Ravens game, Bronco fans will have the opportunity to scout upcoming opponents.
Week Five kicks off in a few hours, and my heart is hoping for a Chiefs’ loss, followed by a huge Bronco victory in New England and a Saints’ victory. My head, however, tells me that these games may turn out differently; especially, the Bronco game and the Chargers game. Regardless of the ever present battle between my heart and head, that is the beauty of the NFL – every Sunday offers up an entirely new scenario that probably couldn’t be written, even if you tried.
Enjoy the games Bronco fans!