AFC West Notes: Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders


Broncos S Justin Simmons may have been snubbed for his first-ever Pro Bowl invitation. But Simmons is set to earn plenty more recognition in the coming months after Denver made Simmons the team’s nominee for the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award and Broncos GM John Elway made it clear the team was willing to re-sign him to what could possibly be the highest deal ever for a safety. 

“He spends a lot of time in the community, he’s a great person and he plays hard week in and week out,” Elway said via the Athletic’s Nicki Jhabvala. “We’re thrilled that Justin is a Denver Bronco. We plan to keep him as a Denver Bronco. But also this nomination for him shows you what kind of person he is, and he’s really a great person.”

  • Per KUSA’s Mike Klis, Broncos HC Vic Fangio said it doesn’t look like either OT Ja’Wuan James or G Ronald Leary will play this week, with the prognosis for the final game of the season after that not looking good either. 
  • Fangio added he used S Kareem Jackson‘s two-game suspension for a DUI as an example for the rest of the team: “You can learn from other people’s mistakes. Don’t anticipate it happening again. Sometimes one time things can come back to bite ya.” (Klis)
  • Broncos second-round rookie QB Drew Lock said he’s focused more on proving to his teammates that he deserves to start than the front office: “There’s always that thought process, if I’m doing that it’s just to prove it to the guys on the field … I’m confident and feel like I am the guy for the job, but that’s just not sitting there in my head, my biggest thing, is, obviously to win this game.” (Jeff Legwold)


Initially, Chiefs DE Terrell Suggs was aiming to rejoin the Ravens when he and the Cardinals decided to part ways last week. Suggs even went so far as to put out that he wouldn’t report for any team besides Baltimore and would retire if they claimed him. However, the Chiefs took the chance and after a brief talk with HC Andy Reid, Suggs was on board with joining Kansas City. 

“I was really uncertain about my future last week, but I talked to coach and it was a brief conversation and I was like, ‘OK,'” Suggs said via ESPN’s Adam Teicher. “I asked coach, ‘I just learned the hard way that a player like me just (doesn’t) fit in anywhere. He was like, ‘Trust me, you’ll fit in here.'”

“It’s hard to turn down (playing with) the reigning MVP (Patrick Mahomes) and a playoff team and just the exciting things they’re doing, this atmosphere,” Suggs added. “Hopefully I can come in and contribute right off the bat. This was a team that was a penalty away from the Super Bowl last year so they’re not missing much. Hopefully I can add that extra addition that we can kind of potentially do something special.”


  • Per the Athletic’s Vic Tafur, Raiders HC Jon Gruden said they will hold out first-round rookie RB Josh Jacobs this week in the hopes his shoulder injury calms down enough for him to play in the season finale. 
  • Raiders placed OT Trent Brown on injured reserve. (NFLTR)

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