AFC Notes: Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs, Raiders


  • KUSA’s Mike Klis could only see Broncos OLB Von Miller returning for 2021 if he accepts a pay cut from his $18 million figure next season. Right now, Klis says he doesn’t expect Miller to accept a diminished contract. 
  • Denver 7’s Troy Renck says league sources believe it’s possible Denver and Miller could work out a return on a reduced salary. Renck says Denver could put incentives in a new deal to allow Miller to recoup his original salary. 
  • Broncos HC Vic Fangio said the current plan is for Miller not to practice or play this year. (Klis)
  • Fangio confirmed there’s mutual interest between the Broncos and S Justin Simmons in a long-term deal: “I can’t totally comment on that other than to say I know Justin wants to be here and we want him here. So usually something can be done.” (Klis)


  • The Athletic’s Daniel Popper writes Chargers QB Tyrod Taylor could look to land an opportunity as a bridge starter somewhere else given he’s a clear backup if he stays in Los Angeles. 
  • Popper expects the Chargers to extend TE Hunter Henry to a four-year deal in the neighborhood of $46 million and also focus on upgrading the second tight end spot. 
  • Offensive tackle should be one of the Charger’s top priorities in the draft, per Popper. He also expects them to try and keep Dan Feeney at center. 
  • Popper thinks the Chargers will let DE Melvin Ingram leave in free agency and add another rotational pass rusher to replace him. 
  • Chargers S Rayshawn Jenkins is another strong extension candidate to re-sign with Los Angeles, according to Popper. 
  • While the Chargers could save a big chunk of money by releasing veteran CBs Casey Hayward and Chris Harris, Popper points out that would create a big need in the secondary, so he doesn’t expect the team to go that route. 
  • Chargers WR Keenan Allen (hamstring) is expected to be a game-time decision for this week’s game against the Broncos. (Popper)
  • Chargers TE Donald Parham will start in place of Hunter Henry this week while Henry is on the COVID-19 list. (Gilbert Manzano)


Chiefs TE Travis Kelce has redefined a number of records at the position. He first set the record for yardage in a season in 2018 with 1,336, though it only lasted hours before 49ers TE George Kittle broke it with 1,377 yards. Not only is Kelce on pace to blow by Kittle’s record again with 1,318 receiving yards so far and two more games to go, but the 31-year-old is already the first tight end with five straight thousand-yard seasons and could also become the first-ever tight end to lead the NFL in receiving yards. 

“If you look at history and you look at the seasons tight ends have had, he’s got to have one of the best as far as catching the ball and being a playmaker on offense,” Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes said via ESPN’s Adam Teicher. “That speaks for itself. It’s truly a special season by a tight end and not just by a tight end but just a player, a game-changer.”


Raiders CB Trayvon Mullen doesn’t feel that his confidence was rattled after committing four penalties in Week 15 against the Chargers.  

“I know I’m a great player,” Mullen said, via Jerry McDonald of the Mercury News. “I play hard, I go out there, I put it all on the line and I play to win. I play hard and aggressive and things happen. I know I’ve got to get better and learn from it.”

Raiders’ interim DC Rod Marinelli said he has been helping Mullen make some corrections with his coverage. 

“It’s our job as teachers to help him,” Marinelli said. “It’s a coach working with a player, a player working with a coach and playing within the rules. I love how competitive this guy is, and he’s been really good at times this year. Just helping him clean some of this stuff up. First, you bring it to a man’s attention, then you help him correct it.”

Marinelli feels the Raiders made an improvement in their gang tackling but there are still mistakes they must eliminate. 

“I thought it was an improvement,” Marinelli said. “It was really solid. Want more still . . . we’ve got to eliminate mistakes, eliminate some big plays, eliminate penalties. That’s coaches and players, working together. I just thought they showed a ton of heart in that game toward the end and I just really loved how they kept playing, but we got the win.”

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