LA Chargers News: The AFC West is not one of the toughest, nor easiest, divisions in football.
The LA Chargers have not won the AFC West for 11 years and it would be a bit of a surprise if the team did become division champs in 2020. It is nothing to do with the Chargers being a bad team, they just have to share a division with the best team in football, the Kansas City Chiefs.
In fact, the Chargers have struggled in performing against their division foes. The team went 0-6 against the AFC West last year and the division record over the last six seasons has been really bad.
The Chargers are 4-21 against the Chiefs and Denver Broncos since the 2014 season. The Bolts are 6-6 against the Raiders since 2014, moving their overall division record in the last six seasons to 10-26. That’s rough.
Perhaps the LA Chargers can turn it around this year, as the AFC West is not considered to be one of the toughest divisions in football.
LA Chargers News: AFC West ranks fourth among NFL divisions
Ben Linsey of Pro Football Focus used their tools to rank all eight divisions in the NFL by overall talent. Linsey utilized both PFF’s 2020 season simulation and its PFF Elo Rankings to determine the order of the divisions.
And despite having the best team in football, the AFC West comes right smack dab in the middle at fourth. The AFC West trails the NFC West, NFC South, AFC North and is ahead of the NFC North, AFC South, AFC East and NFC East, in that order.
It does make it more difficult that the Chargers have to play the second toughest division in football — the NFC South — but they do get some relief in playing the second easiest division in football — the AFC East.
As for the AFC West itself, the average win total for teams in the division is 8.13 (the fourth highest) although they have the second-highest combined ELO rating (which is carried by the Chiefs).
The biggest question mark for the division is the quarterback position and rightfully so as all three teams outside of the Chiefs have question marks at the position. Tyrod Taylor has not started in three years, Drew Lock is entering year two and does not have a lot of game snaps behind him and Derek Carr might not even finish the season as the Raiders starting quarterback.
For that reason, the race for second place is up in the air in the AFC West. If every team’s quarterback plays to their ceiling, though, then the AFC West very well could easily be a top three, if not top two, division in football.