Week ten in the NFL – my how fast the season goes! The good news – Coach John Fox successfully went through open heart surgery, the Denver Broncos are coming off a bye to face AFC West rival San Diego Chargers on national television, and the Kansas City Chiefs have a bye this week, which means this Bronco fan living in Chiefs country will not have to hear about another Chiefs victory! For my thoughts on the two games featuring AFC West teams in week ten, please continue reading.
Denver Broncos at San Diego Chargers: The Broncos are coming off their bye week but it was anything but a down week. Due to Coach John Fox’s heart surgery, John Elway named Jack Del Rio interim coach. Only time will tell if this situation had a positive impact or a negative impact on the Broncos’ season and their goal of a Super Bowl championship. Del Rio is a smart man and will probably not do anything too drastic – after all, if it’s not broken, don’t fix it. I am anxious to see how the defense plays in week ten given that their best performance of the season took place the last time they took the field against the Washington Redskins. No doubt, the Chargers and their fans will be ready for the Broncos! If you recall the 2012 season, the last visit to San Diego made by the Broncos was the night of the epic Monday night game – 35 second half, unanswered points that lead to the first of seventeen consecutive regular season victories for the Broncos. The Chargers appear to be exactly what their .500 record indicates through half the season – good one week, bad one week. After failing to score a touchdown against the Redskins in week nine, the Chargers had to settle for a field goal and overtime, which was won by Washington when they scored a touchdown on their first overtime possession. Philip Rivers is thriving statistically and he may have to rely on those stats this weekend to keep pace with the Peyton Manning and the Broncos. Hopefully, the Broncos have had a great week of preparation, have adapted to the coaching change, and have not looked ahead to the week eleven battle against the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs in Denver.
Oakland Raiders at New York Giants: Nick Foles went “Peyton Manning” on the Raiders last week and threw for seven touchdowns, leading the Philadelphia Eagles to a 49-20 victory over the Raiders. To be honest with you, as much as I enjoyed it, I didn’t see that coming – from Nick Foles or the Raiders! How will the Raiders respond one week later after flying across the country to face the 2-6 New York Giants? I believe every NFL team/player has a large amount of pride and I actually expect this game to be entertaining and close. Halfway through the season, both teams find themselves at a spot they didn’t expect to be at, or want to be at, and that is the bottom of their respective divisions. The Raiders and Giants are both 0-2 against each other’s division so this is a must win in that aspect. Each team also needs a win desperately because the playoff picture is still not solidified, even though their chances become dimmer as each week goes by. As usual, my allegiance is with the Broncos and not the AFC West, so I will pull for Peyton’s little brother and the New York Giants to hand the Raiders their sixth loss of the season.
Go Broncos – beat San Diego!