And finally, returning to its rightful position as the flagship division of football, at least on the AFC side of the bracket, is the loaded AFC West …
(Please click picture below for full Excel schedule breakdown):
* Final Order of Finish:
1. Kansas City Chiefs
2. San Diego “Super” Chargers
3. denver broncos
4. oakland raiders
* First Read: I’ve been saying since March that the AFC West was sending three to the playoffs. Well lookie here Mabel – I have the AFC West sending three to playoffs! Including one wildcard round matchup that, uum, yeah. We’ll get to that in the final posting of 2012’s most anticipated post.
* Biggest Game: Chiefs at raiders, week 15. The game that gave KC separation from denver and San Diego. And before you accuse me of bias – first, hell yes I’m biased! You spend nearly $1,000 / year to watch a team? You develop a bias! Second, even our “good buddy”, Ol’ Pete King at Sports Illustrated, has the Chiefs winning the AFC West (and a playoff game to boot!) And third, the Chiefs have won 9 of 10 in oakland, and the only loss was on a once-in-a-lifetime overtime catch by jacoby ford two years ago.
* Seems wacky: the ONLY thing that came out differently than I anticipated … is that entering these picks, I thought the order would be SD / KC / den. Chiefs and Chargers wound up flipped. If you want to make an argument it should be SD then KC, I won’t oppose that argument.
* Division (Home) Uniform Rankings:
1. San Diego “Super” Chargers (baby blue unis)
2. oakland raiders
3. Kansas City Chiefs
4. denver broncos
Reason: there isn’t a cooler looking uniform in sports than the baby blues the Chargers haul out for their prime time / national TV window games. And while I love the Chiefs red and gold … there’s just something mythical about the silver and black. denver’s uniforms are atrocious. Go back to the old school donkey coming out of the D for denver, then we’ll talk.
* Division MVP: peyton manning, denver broncos. Can we be honest here for a moment? If peyton manning isn’t under center, the broncos are lucky – lucky – to go 5-11. peyton is going to single handedly win the donkeys at least three games they have no business winning. I just pray to God that one of those three isn’t in the wildcard round …
* Song from Mixology 2012 to Describe Each Team:
Kansas City Chiefs: “I Got a Name” by Jim Croce. “Like the fool that I am and I’ll always be? I’ve got a dream, I’ve got a dream. They can change their minds, but they can’t change me. I’ve got a dream! I’ve got a dream! I know I could share it if you want me to – if you’re going my way? I’ll go with you …”
San Diego “Super” Chargers: “Modern Love” by Matt Nathanson. “This modern love, is not enough”. What every Chargers fan is saying about the Norv Turner era.
denver broncos: from “The Simpsons:”
(doorbell) (ding! dong!)
(mail dude) telegram!
(homer simpson) Project Arturis couldn’t have succeeded without you. This will get you a little closer to that dream of yours. It’s not the Dallas Cowboys, but it’s a start. Drop me a line if you’re on the east coast, Hank Scorpio.
(camera) (pans back to show a bunch of clumsy, out of shape, worthless football players)
(homer simpson) AWWW! The denver broncos!!!
(marge simpson) I think owning the denver broncos is pretty good!
(homer simpson) (disappointed voice) yeah, yeah.
(marge simpson) Well explain to me why it isn’t?
(homer simpson) (sighs in disgust) You just don’t understand football, Marge.
Hey, it was that, or “Lips of an Angel” by Hinder. Either one will piss off the resident denver fan … so I went with the less offensive* (rimshot!)
oakland raiders: “In the Air Tonight” by Phil Collins. No matter how much I hate that team … there’s something about playing in the black hole that’s just inspirational.
(*: I still don’t get her hatred of this song. It’s a GREAT song!)
Bottom Line: the way this played out, the AFC West gets three in for the first time since … uum … hang on, gotta look this up … first time since 1993! Holy crap Batman!
Final Prediction: wildcard weekend, if this plays out as I anticipate / prognosticate / fling the dung against the wall and hope it doesn’t skid to the floor? Uum, yeah. Look at who finishes first, look at who finishes third, realize those are your 3 and 6 seeds, and, uum, yeah.