AROUND THE AFC WEST: The Broncos are on the outside looking in

Dec 2 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos fan holds a sign in reference to the team clinching the AFC West following the win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Sports Authority Field. The Broncos defeated the Buccaneers 31-23. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Broncos welcomed Tom Brady and the Patriots to the Mile High City on Sunday, and once again the matchup between the Broncos and Patriots had huge playoff implications. Unfortunately for Broncos Country, the game might have eliminated Denver from postseason contention.

Before we dive into the loss to New England on Sunday, let’s briefly discuss the state of Denver football, because if you follow games via Twitter you would think the Broncos not only lost the game on Sunday, but you may think the team lost all they accomplished last season too.

I try to look at sports the way a surfer looks at a wave; I’m not sure why, because I have only tried to surf once in my life and failed miserably, but if you enjoy the ride, you cant really go wrong.

There are ups and downs, high and lows, but the highest of all highs came last year with a Super Bowl victory. To put in a more simplified way, be grateful. After all, you could be living in Cleveland.

Denver was only able to muster up three more points on offense than you and I did on Sunday, losing to the Patriots by a final score of 16-3. The Denver defense held Tom Brady to just 188 yards passing and, of course, the above-mentioned 16 points. By now you have heard that there was an argument in the locker room after the game between Aqib Talib and Russell Okung.

Not only do I approve of the mixup, but I think it needs to happen more often.

Players need to be held accountable, and it’s no secret that Denver’s biggest weakness is the offensive line. Kudos to Okung for trying to speak up on his guys’ behalf ,but know your place, big fella. The locker room after another disappointing loss is not it.

The Broncos are not officially eliminated from the playoffs with the loss to the Patriots, but it’s an uphill battle, and they will need some help. Again, please let me remind you that the Denver Broncos won Super Bowl 50!

Now, let’s take a look around the rest of the AFC West:

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs, who came into the week sitting atop the AFC West, couldn’t get it done against a team that had just beat the Broncos the week before. The Tennessee Titans took down the Chiefs on a late field goal Sunday. This game ended before the Broncos game got underway and would have been a big help to Broncos Country had Denver done their part against the Patriots.

The Chiefs will play host to the Broncos on Christmas night and could all but eliminate them with a win.

Oakland Raiders / San Diego Chargers

The Raiders and Chargers squared off against one another Sunday, and either the Raiders are falling back down to earth or the Chargers are not as bad as we all thought they were. I believe it to be the latter. The Chargers are not a good team, but they are not a terrible team, either — see, the Cleveland Browns.

Oakland is not the dominant team some thought they would be, but they are still one of the best teams in the AFC.

The final two weeks will solve the riddle of the NFL playoff picture and there may not be a better race to watch than the one we will witness in the AFC West.

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