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How The AFC West Can Be Won; Tough Schedule Means Broncos Have Hope

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Much is made about the schedule, especially before the season. I like to look at the schedule after a few weeks - in this case 6 - just to see where the team lie in terms of opponent 'toughness'. Today, the Denver Post beat me to it a bit, and it was brought to our attention in this Fan Shot by underdog. I appreciate it, to be sure!

I look at things a bit differently. I remove games that involve the team in question. For example. The Seattle Seahawks are 3-2, which includes their loss to the Broncos in Week 2. To determine their record, I take away the loss to Denver. That gives me their record against all the other teams, which in this example is 3-1. Let's look at the AFC West -

Opponent Records:

Denver Broncos(2-4)
San Diego Chargers(2-4)
Oakland Raiders(2-4)
Kansas City Chiefs(3-2)

Using the above, the AFC West standings are turned upside down. Remember, these records remove the results involving the teams, so when looking at the Chiefs, I don't include their wins or losses in the games. The Browns are 1-4 in games that don't involve the Chiefs, for instance. Therefore, the Chiefs have played the easiest schedule so far.

What about games that remain? Let's take a look...

Oakland Raiders
San Diego Chargers
Denver Broncos
Kansas City Chiefs

What does this tell us? Not only did Kansas City have the easiest road through the first 6 weeks, they will have the easiest road the rest of the season as well. Of course, the Broncos, which had the hardest schedule by far in the AFC West through 6 weeks has a much 'easier' time the final 10 weeks of the season, including 3 games against the NFC West and 6 games remaining against Kansas City, Oakland and San Diego.

The Broncos need to take care of business, of course, especially in the two games against Kansas City. Do that, and the AFC West can still be won.