AFC Notes: Broncos, Chargers, Texans


The Broncos had visions of OLBs Bradley Chubb and Von Miller terrorizing opposite edges of their defense when they took Chubb in the first round in 2018. He seemed well on his way to fulfilling that with 12.5 sacks as a rookie. But injuries, including a torn ACL and ankle surgery, have limited him to 7.5 sacks in 20 games over the last three seasons. There was already enough pressure on Chubb to live up to his draft status before, now Denver’s decision to trade Miller to the Rams puts even more on his shoulders. 

“That’s what makes the injuries hard,” Chubb said via KUSA’s Mike Klis. “The ankles and stuff are hard because you’re carrying all these expectations. Not even from what people want from you, but from what you want from yourself. You want to go out there and be the best and that’s why I got frustrated with those ankle injuries but now I try to take it as a blessing.

“Von used to always say, ‘Pressure is a privilege.’ If nobody expects anything of you, you don’t have any pressure to do anything. If everybody is looking for you to make that play and they know what you’ve done in the past, they know what you can do, so that’s why you have that pressure on you. It’s been good. I try to embrace it and with the guys we have in that room it’s kind of easy. If I have a problem I relay it to them and they help me get over it and vice versa. It’s been real special.”


  • Chargers’ HC Brandon Staley said LB Joey Bosa cleared concussion protocol but was held out as a precaution due to his concussion history: “As long as I’m the head coach here. I’m going to be making decisions like that in the best interest of our players.” (Daniel Popper)


  • Texans’ HC David Culley held out LB Zach Cunningham for missing a COVID test and commented on it following the game: “We have standards, we have rules.” (Aaron Wilson)
  • Culley admitted that the interception thrown by QB Tyrod Taylor contributed to his decision to bench the veteran. (Wilson)
  • Culley also said the team trainers told him they weren’t sure if Taylor could grip the football after hyperextending his wrist. (Wilson)
  • Rookie QB Davis Mills thinks he still has room to grow but remains positive: “Being confident in what my job is, just being comfortable with the guys around me.” (Wilson)
  • Texans’ LB Christian Kirksey praised teammate LB Kamu Grugier-Hill for setting the franchise tackle record: “He was in on every tackle. He’s done really well this year for us. I love the way he plays, the energy he’s brought to the team, he was flying around. Happy to see him get the franchise record.” (Wilson)
  • Aaron Wilson reports Texans CB Tremon Smith‘s new contract includes a $300,000 base, a $150,000 signing bonus, and a $50,000 workout bonus.
  • According to ESPN’s Sarah Barshop, the Texans deactivated LB Zach Cunningham in Week 13 against the Colts for disciplinary reasons 

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