New faces in new places.
The NFL is known for having a lot of turnover from season to season, as players leave for other teams, and rookies enter the league; this is nothing new. For the AFC West, there's been a lot of players shifting around; whether it's joining rival teams within the division, or even the return of Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch out of retirement.
It's been an interesting week in the division, with some shocking news being reported, let's take a look at this week's edition of the AFC West Update.
It's still strange seeing Jamaal Charles in a Broncos uniform, considering he spent his first nine years as a member of the Kansas City Chiefs. For the majority of Charles' career, he was the alpha male in the Chiefs' backfield, causing problems for teams around the league. While it may take some time for my eyes to adjust, Charles seems to be adjusting well to his new team, per DenverBroncos.com.
At 30 years of age, the former Texas Longhorn is entering what many would consider the twilight years of a running backs career, but naturally Charles would disagree. Throughout the Broncos' practices this offseason, he's made it a point of emphasis to let everyone know he's not on the team for a minimal role, he wants to be *the *guy. If Charles can continue his rehab – he was riddled with injuries throughout 2016 – and stay healthy, the Broncos could certainly benefit from their newest offensive weapon.
Kansas City Chiefs
For several years now, the Chiefs have been best for their defense and rushing attack. While quarterback Alex Smith might not be one of the premier gunslingers in the league, he certainly gets the job done; and has done so for much of his now-lengthy career. Up until injuries plagued running back Jamaal Charles' 2016 season, he was a key component in the team's offensive attack, but the addition of wide receiver Jeremy Maclin in 2015 was intended to help spread the field.
Fast forward two years and neither of these players are on the Chiefs roster anymore. Charles is now a member of the Broncos, and last Friday the Chiefs surprised the NFL world with the release of Maclin. In his first season with the team (2015), Maclin led the team in receiving yards with 1,088 and added eight touchdowns, also the most on the team. There's no denying Maclin's athletic ability, but possibly the Chiefs see something no one else does. It'll be interesting to see where the 29-year-old winds up playing next season.
Los Angeles Chargers
With the seventh overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft, the Chargers selected Clemson wide receiver Mike Williams, who was highly touted as one of the best offensive threats in the draft. At 6'4", 218 pounds, Williams is a big target that can wreak havoc on opposing defenses - just ask the University of Alabama.
For veteran quarterback Philip Rivers, the addition of Williams will only enhance an already potent offensive attack, as he lines up opposite wide receiver Keenan Allen. While his talent is undisputed, he's started off his career with the Bolts dealing with injuries. According to Chargers.com, Williams hasn't practiced with the team since Rookie Mini-Camp.
The team announced Tuesday that their prized-first round pick wouldn't be a part of the remaining two weeks of their offseason program, as he recovers from a mild herniated disc in his lower back. No one likes seeing players get hurt, but for a team that battled injuries all season long in 2016, Williams' recovery is more important than ever.