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AFC West Roundup: Week 15


The Broncos maintain the lead in the AFC West, but the Chiefs are catching up.

Denver Broncos (10-4)**

Last outing:L, 34-27 at Pittsburgh (9-5)

Standouts: An incendiary first half on offense showed the potential of the Broncos' passing attack, with wide receivers Emmanuel Sanders (139 receiving yards, 24 rushing yards and one touchdown in the first half) and Demaryius Thomas (52 receiving yards and two touchdowns in the first half) torching the Steelers as Denver took a 27-10 second-quarter lead. But the team faltered in the second half on offense and defense, allowing Pittsburgh to score three touchdowns in the second half without scoring any of their own. After two last-gasp drives to tie the score ended with turnovers on downs, the Broncos suffered their second consecutive loss.

Up next: After last year's Monday-night loss to the Bengals, the Broncos will look to extract a modicum of revenge with another Monday-night game against Cincinnati (11-3), but this time at home.

- Ben Swanson

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Kansas City Chiefs (9-5)

Last outing: W, 34-14 at Baltimore (4-10)

Standouts: With a win over the Ravens, the Chiefs not only continue their remarkable eight-game winning streak, but also remain on the heels of the Broncos in the AFC West rankings. The Chiefs didn't exactly light up the Ravens as they were outgained in total offensive yards (366-277), passing (273-164) and first downs (19-15). But Kansas City's defense made the difference, forcing three Baltimore turnovers with safety Tyvon Branch recovering a fumble and two interceptions by cornerback Marcus Peters, including one returned for a touchdown.

Up next: The Chiefs will look to extend their streak to nine when they play host to the Cleveland Browns (3-11).

*- Allie Raymond


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Oakland Raiders (6-8)

Last outing: L, 30-20 vs. Packers (10-4) 

Standouts: The Raiders' postseason hopes were dashed Sunday with a loss to the Packers. Quarterback Derek Carr threw for 276 yards and two touchdowns, but also threw two interceptions including one Green Bay returned for a touchdown. One bright spot came from wide receiver Amari Cooper, whose 120 receiving yards pushed him over 1,000 on the season, making him the first rookie receiver in franchise history to hit that milestone.

Up next: The Raiders will host the San Diego Chargers (4-10) in a Christmas Eve matchup.

- Allie Raymond

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**San Diego Chargers (4-10)

The Broncos fell to the Steelers Sunday night in Pittsburgh.


Last outing:W, 30-14 vs. Dolphins (5-9)

Standouts:In their final home game of the year — and possibly their last in San Diego -- the Chargers had their most complete game of the year on either side of the ball. With 90 rushing yards, Donald Brown had the best individual game of the year of any Chargers running back and San Diego totaled 140 net rushing yards as a team, their best total through 15 weeks. Also, quarterback Philip Rivers threw for 311 yards and three touchdowns. Defensively, San Diego contained Miami for just 44 rushing yards and 187 net passing yards. The combined 231 net yards was the Chargers defense's fewest yards allowed this season.

Up next: The Chargers head to Oakland for a Christmas Eve, Thursday-night showdown with the Raiders (6-8).

- Ben Swanson

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