AFC West Notes: Broncos, Chargers, Raiders

     

Broncos

Broncos HC Vic Fangio said he is “pleased” with their receivers group and thinks WR Emmanuel Sanders (Achilles) will be “back earlier” than people expect. 

I like our receivers. I think Emmanuel is doing well physically. I’ve got no medical basis for this but I think he’ll be back earlier than people think. But I’m pleased with the receivers,” said Fangio, via Mike Klis.

Regarding Broncos’ quarterbacks, Fangio said veteran Joe Flacco is having a “really good offseason” while second-round QB Drew Lock is “slowly” improving. 

I think Joe has had a really good offseason. I think Drew is slowly getting better. He’s got a major undertaking here, No. 1 learning a new offense, No. 2 playing under C. And just getting the speed of an NFL game. And I don’t mean slowly as a negative,” said Fangio, via Mike Klis.

Flacco mentioned that the Broncos’ defense has progressed a great amount under Fangio. 

Vic’s defense and the progressions they’ve made and the amount of stuff they’ve put in, it tests you every day so you go out there and you make some mistakes but we’ve been able to learn from a lot of them,” said Flacco, via Ryan O’Halloran. 

Chargers

Chargers LB Denzel Perryman lost 20 pounds this offseason to try and stay healthy for a full season. The team also brought in LB Thomas Davis, who rebounded from three ACL tears to play the best football of his career, to mentor Perryman.

“I’ve watched Denzel a lot,” Davis said via ESPN’s Eric Williams. “He has a ton of ability. His ability to strike people, I feel like is second to none in this league. As long as he’s able to go out and stay healthy, he’s one of the best linebackers in this league. I’m excited to help offer as much knowledge to him as I can. For one, so he can stay healthy because I’ve dealt with the injury stuff in my past. Whatever advice I can offer to help make that happen I’m going to give that to him.”

Perryman was relieved when he re-signed with the Chargers this offseason on a two-year, $12 million deal. He’s missed 23 out of 65 potential games and played only eight games in 2018. 

“It was an emotional 24 hours,” Perryman said. “Obviously, the world saw me cry. The reason why I got so emotional is because the Chargers could have let me go, and I didn’t know what was going to happen. So just putting pen to paper was unreal.”

Perryman and Davis have already started bonding, even though Perryman isn’t cleared for on-field work yet. 

“We’re getting along great,” Perryman said. “His locker is right next to mine, and it’s really like having a big brother. It means a lot [to have someone like Davis on the team]. He brings energy and leadership.”

Raiders

Raiders DC Paul Guenther compared first-round DE Clelin Ferrell to Michael Johnson and Carlos Dunlap. 

That’s the type of guy we had in Cincinnati with Michael Johnson and Carlos Dunlap, every-down ends that are big men, can rush and play the run,” Guenther said, via Jerry McDonald of the Mercury News. “That’s exactly what we’re looking for.”

Raiders’ recently signed veteran LB Vontaze Burfict said he has been impressed with Ferrell’s maturity.

He’s a rookie, but I swear he’s been here like five years,” Burfict said. “Doesn’t act like a rookie at all, comes in to handle business. Hes even a leader in the huddle. Just cheering guys up, let’s finish the period off, and that’s a lot coming from a rookie. When i was rookie I didn’t want to say much, just go out do my job.

Guenther added that Raiders’ first-round S Johnathan Abram has “big expectations” this season. 

He has big expectations, big shoes to fill,” said Guenther, via Scott Bair of NBC Sports. “Hopefully he can do that.”

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