AFC West Notes: Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs


Since the death of former owner Pat Bowlen, the Broncos have been embroiled in a series of disputes about who the next owner will be. Bowlen established a trust in the stewardship of team CEO Joe Ellis to find the next owner, which zeroed in on his daughter Brittany Bowlen. However, it appears unlikely the rest of the family will relent to her being named the controlling owner, which would throw a wrench into the approval vote and could mean the sale of the Broncos. 

“It starts with what Pat Bowlen’s wishes were,” Goodell said via the Athletic’s Nicki Jhabvala. “He established the trust to make sure there was an orderly transition of the franchise if something should happen to him. Unfortunately, that did, and Pat wanted to make sure the franchise was in good hands, in good management. He understood the importance of the league policies, and he supported that. He was one of the best league men I knew, and I talked to him probably every day, both as commissioner in my earlier years and also as chief operating officer.

“He wants his franchise, the Denver Broncos, to continue to have that success, and that’s why he set up the trust the way he did. For us, we want to make sure that his wishes are followed. I don’t think he’d be happy about the public disputes that are going on. Unity is something that I think as an organization in the NFL, you have one person who makes a decision on behalf of an ownership group. That’s a vital and principal point in our ownership policy, and that is what Pat understood, he wanted that, and we need to have that in the case of all franchises. So that, at some point in time, will have to develop in the context of the Broncos.”

  • The Denver Broncos announced that they’ve hired agent Rich Hurtado to be their new VP of football administration. His primary responsibility will be managing the salary cap and negotiating contracts. 


  • The Athletic’s Daniel Popper writes that if the Chargers move on from QB Philip Rivers, he anticipates them using QB Tyrod Taylor as a bridge to a rookie they’ll take this year, perhaps as high as No. 6 overall. 
  • Popper doesn’t think signing Patriots QB Tom Brady will be realistic given what he will cost. 
  • Popper anticipates RBs Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson leading the Chargers’ rushing attack in 2020. 
  • He also sees the Chargers cutting LB Denzel Perryman and keeping LB Thomas Davis


  • Fansided’s Matt Verderame reveals Chiefs DT Mike Pennel nearly signed with the Packers earlier this season instead of the Chiefs. But Green Bay had an injury at tight end and had to withdraw their offer. 
  • According to Tom Pelissero, Chiefs K Harrison Butker plans to travel to Hard Rock Stadium in Miami early with the team’s specialists to go through a kicking and punting session. 
  • Butker tells Pelissero that he will be taking “mental notes” on several things at Hard Rock Stadium, including the playing surface, wind, the lights, and other small details that could influence kicks.  
  • Though in hindsight Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes would get picked way before the 10th pick in the 2017 draft, he’s happy he landed in Kansas City and got to sit behind QB Alex Smith for most of his rookie season: “I think I ended up in the perfect place.” (Pro Football Talk)

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