AFC Notes: Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders


  • Front Office Sports’ Michael McCarthy and A.J. Perez report billionaire Robert Smith has emerged as a potential buyer for the Denver Broncos. Smith has a net worth of well over $6 billion and the Broncos are expected to sell for between $3 and $4 billion. 
  • Smith would become the first black owner in the NFL and earned his fortune as a private equity investor. 
  • McCarthy and Perez mention there are six groups that have expressed interest in buying the team. Former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is not believed to be among them. 
  • The two add Broncos EVP John Elway and former QB Peyton Manning are believed to be a part of two buying groups as minority owners and Brittany Bowlen, the daughter of owner Pat Bowlen, is also believed to be readying a bid. 


  • Chiefs TE Travis Kelce told QB Patrick Mahomes that he was going to improvise on his route and run to the open area of the field: “I told [Mahomes] I’m probably not going to run the route that’s called and I was going to run to the open area. And in his cadence he was yelling to me, ‘Do it! Do it!‘” (Nicki Jhabvala)
  • Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill knew that the offense could drive down the field and put the team in a position to tie the game with 13 seconds left: “Deep down inside, we knew we could do it because we’ve got the playmakers to do it.” (Adam Teicher)
  • Chiefs HC Andy Reid said Mahomes makes everyone around him better: “He made everyone around him better, which he’s great at.” (Teicher)
  • Hill believes Mahomes is well on his way to the Hall of Fame: “This is definitely another step for him to the Hall of Fame.” (Teicher)
  • Mahomes called this a marquee victory for his career: “I’ll remember this for the rest of my life.” (Nate Taylor)
  • Reid was complimentary of his team not backing down in the face of adversity: “The thing I love about this team is that they didn’t flinch.” (Teicher)
  • Chiefs S Tyrann Mathieu is in the concussion protocol after exiting Sunday night’s game with a head injury. (Sam McDowell)


ESPN’s Adam Schefter is among many connecting the dots between the Raiders and Patriots OC Josh McDaniels as their next head coach. The Raiders are still in their search for a general manager, but they’ve requested an interview with Patriots exec Dave Ziegler.

“I don’t believe that as of this morning the Raiders have even put in a permission slip. Until they do, it’s not real. But if they do, then I would say it’s on,” Schefter said in a radio interview with WEEI’s Greg Hill. “I think Dave Ziegler is right in the thick of that. I think if Dave Ziegler takes that job, it’s only logical to deduce that he would have interest in Josh. So that’s something that just continues to float out there. We’ll see what the Raiders decide to do, but yes, that’s probably wise to pay attention to.”

Schefter adds that although Patriots HC Bill Belichick has worked in the past to keep McDaniels in the fold, he doesn’t think he would stand in his way if McDaniels wanted to go to Las Vegas. 

“I don’t think there’s anything Bill could do to get in the way of Josh becoming head coach of the Raiders, if that’s what Josh wants to do,” Schefter said. “If Josh wants to become the head coach of the Raiders, he’s going to be the head coach of the Raiders — if Dave gets the job. I kind of think there’s a little bit of a connection there between the two. If the Raiders go that direction with Dave, I would think — we’re making assumptions — if Dave gets the job, then why would he not be interested in Josh? And if he’s interested in Josh, I don’t know what Bill could do.”

  • ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reports the Raiders will interview 49ers DC DeMeco Ryans for their HC vacancy after the NFC Championship Game.

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