AFC West Notes: Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs

     

Broncos

Broncos S Justin Simmons will face a particularly unique situation when he sits down with the team to negotiate his next contract this offseason. Sitting across from him and his negotiating team at the table will be one of his former agents, Rich Hurtado, who was just hired to be the Broncos’ new negotiator and salary cap manager. Simmons isn’t fazed, though, by someone who used to represent him being on the other side. 

“It’s cool because I’ve gotten to know (Hurtado) well for the past two years after switching over to CAA with Todd (France) and Rich and them,” Simmons said via KUSA’s Mike Klis. “It’s cool for me. He’s been my advocate for the past two years in terms of dealing with the Broncos so now he’s with them. You know, it’ll be interesting, but it will be fun. He’s a great guy. Obviously, in my opinion a great hire because I’ve known him. I’m excited for him.”

Simmons will be looking to be paid among the highest players in the NFL at the safety position following his breakout 2019. How comfortable Hurtado and the Broncos are with meeting that will determine if Simmons ends up playing in 2020 on the franchise tag, which he says he’d be open to. 

“My whole idea is I can’t control it if it happens or not,” Simmons said. “But if it does happen, I don’t know if I’m the type of guy who would sit out. Playing is my passion and if it happens, it happens. Obviously, we’d like to get a long-term deal done and speaking with Elway and all the guys there, they’re great and I love the system. I think the system fits for both parties — for myself and for Vic. We’re just excited, like I said. It’s a time where you don’t get in this position often and we’re trying to find ways to enjoy it.”

Chargers

  • According to ESPN’s Rob Demovsky, the Chargers are hiring former Packers and Browns OL coach James Campen as their next offensive line coach. 
  • Per ESPN’s Field Yates, the Chargers are also hiring former Jets assistant OL coach David Diaz-Infante to the same position on their staff. 
  • In addition to these moves, the Chargers also made official moving RB coach Alfredo Roberts to TE coach, moving TE coach Rip Scherer to senior offensive assistant, defensive QB coach Addison Lynch to assistant DB coach, assistant OL coach Mark Ridgley to RB coach and hiring 2019 coaching fellow Ryan Milus as a defensive QC coach. 

Chiefs

People with the Chiefs regularly cite the year QB Patrick Mahomes was able to spend behind QB Alex Smith on the bench as a key factor in how the former first-round passer was able to take the league by storm once the starting job was handed over. Mahomes himself says learning how to be a professional from Smith was huge. While the veteran is no longer in Kansas City, he’s still credited as a key part of the Chiefs’ Super Bowl win. 

“He texted me right after the game, saying he enjoyed it just as much as we did,” Mahomes said via ESPN’s Jenna Laine. “He wasn’t there, but he was part of it — I think that’s the biggest thing. He built the culture that I came into. He was the guy that led the team to all these successful seasons and built that winning culture.”

  • NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport expects the Chiefs and Mahomes to agree to an extension this offseason. The negotiations will start in earnest after a new CBA is agreed to and Rapoport expects Mahomes to become the first $40 million a year quarterback. 

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