AFC Notes: Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs, Raiders

     

Broncos

  • ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler says there’s no firm consensus around the NFL on what Lions QB Matthew Stafford would cost in a trade but the general thought is a first-round pick and multiple picks in the second through fourth-round ranges. 
  • Fowler notes new Broncos GM George Paton has had a close-up seat to watch Stafford for years in the NFC North, but incumbent QB Drew Lock is a much cheaper option and a trade for Stafford would be a huge swing as Paton’s first major move. 
  • Some available options for the Broncos to fill their vacancy at DB coach include the Falcons’ Marquand Manuel, the 49ers’ Tony Oden or the Jets’ Dennard Wilson. (Mike Klis)

Chargers

New Chargers HC Brandon Staley‘s resume is a little light on experience. His first year as a coordinator at the NFL came this past season with the Rams and the 38-year-old spent a major chunk of his 11-year college coaching career at the lower levels, with just one year as a grad assistant at Tennessee as the extent of his Division-I coaching experience. But he says he made up for it in other ways. 

“What’s difficult for people to understand is that, even though I was in college from 2006 to 2016, I had a lot of access to the league,” Staley said via Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. “I knew a lot of coaches in the league. I was serving a double education. I kinda looked at it like ‘Good Will Hunting.’ You were getting the Harvard education for a dollar-fifty in late charges at the public library. I’d been preparing. I knew what the NFL was about. I knew how people were playing. I was aware of a lot of different systems. So when I got there, I felt very comfortable.”

  • Akron HC Tom Arth is staying with the university after discussing leaving for a position on Staley’s staff. (Pete Thamel)

Chiefs

Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes was the big story all week after entering the league’s concussion protocol. But Chiefs S Tyrann Mathieu said there was never any doubt that Mahomes would play in the AFC title game, and he played well to boot, completing 29 of 38 passing attempts for 325 yards and three touchdowns to power the Chiefs to their second straight Super Bowl. 

“I knew after the last game. He was in the locker room and he had that look in his eye like, ‘Don’t forget about me,’” Mathieu said via Pro Football Talk. “He’s a great talent [but] he’s a better teammate. He’s a better person. Just watching him work throughout the week, he was the same old Pat. He’s the same teammate, same leader. Moving around trying to extend plays even in practice. So on top of that, he’s a gamer. It doesn’t necessarily matter the situation or the circumstances — he tends to rise above all of that.”

  • Mahomes was diagnosed with turf toe that’s been more of an impediment for him than the concussion protocol, per NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport.
  • The Chiefs don’t think Mahomes will need surgery as of now. However, the plan is to re-evaluate the injury after Kansas City is done playing to make a final determination. 
  • Chiefs HC Andy Reid confirmed LT Eric Fisher has a torn Achilles. (Herbie Teope)
  • Kansas City might be without both starting tackles in the Super Bowl, as Reid made it sound like RT Mitchell Schwartz would also be out with a back injury: “I can’t tell you I’m that optimistic about it.” (Sam Mellinger)

Raiders

  • ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler notes Raiders HC Jon Gruden has long been fascinated by Lions QB Matthew Stafford which makes Las Vegas worth watching in any potential trade discussions. 
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