It is just about that time folks! The 2016 NFL Draft starts with the first round on Thursday with the Chargers having the highest pick in the AFC West at number 3. The Raiders are next in line at 14, but they won't be covered here because these articles are strictly about the rivals and around the NFL. The Chiefs pick is number 28 while the Broncos finish the round out with pick number 31 (Not 32 because the Patriots forfeited their 1st round pick because of "Deflategate").
The San Diego Chargers already have a very likely pick, that being DB extraordinaire Jalen Ramsey out of Florida State. With the Rams and Eagles both trading up to 1 and 2 it is pretty much certain that they are targeting QB's so that leaves possibly the best player in the draft Ramsey up for the taking. It would be shocking to go any other direction because Jalen Ramsey is hyped up (deservedly) as a once in a generation type star DB, however Laremy Tunsil could also be considered as the top offensive line prospect.
Kansas City and Denver on the other hand, they are not nearly so easy to decipher their intentions. With both teams drafting during the end of the 1st round many of their ideal selections are going to have already been picked, and they both are solid teams that don't have a lot of desperate needs.
The Chiefs appear destined for a CB or Defensive Line player according to most of the numerous mock drafts being sent around. That doesn't mean for certain they go that route though, they are definitely in a position where they could draft BPA. I wouldn't be shocked to see them draft an offensive linemen or a wide receiver instead, especially if Laquon Treadwell, Corey Coleman, or Will Fuller are still available. Another name to take note of is Kevin Dodd of Clemson who would be an excellent DE to add.
Then comes the Super Bowl Champion Broncos, sorry I just threw up a little. The Broncos filled their biggest need at LT by signing Russell Okung in free agency which leads me to believe that they will be targeting a DT replacement for Malik Jackson. The best player who will most likely be available at the end of the first round at that position would be one of the two behemoths from Alabama in A'Shawn Robinson or Jarran Reed, or they could get really lucky and see Robert Nkemdiche of USC fall to them because of character concerns.
The Broncos also have a need at QB that they are trying desperately to find a solution to, and Paxton Lynch of Memphis could be a target for them if they decided to trade up. With the top two picks likely being QB's it would take a trade up to be able to snag Lynch but with Mark Sanchez the likely starter this year it might be worth it for them to consider. They could stand pat and have a chance at Michigan State's Connor Cook as well though.
Chiefs draft predictions: Cornerback and defensive line are the most popular picks - Arrowhead Pride
Rounding up the Chiefs draft predictions.
If they take Ramsey, then what? - Bolts From The Blue
10 names to keep an eye on if the Chargers pick Ramsey.
Broncos Draft preview: Positions of need | 9news.com
KUSA—Trying to keep up with the Great Pursuit of Colin Kaepernick was all-consuming for a spell but now has the feel of wasting too much time.
Other stories around the AFC West
Kansas City Chiefs
Chiefs' Marcus Peters lets SportsCenter know their stat is wrong - Arrowhead Pride
Nice response from Peters!
Chiefs focused on 2016 NFL Draft, not Eric Fisher's option (yet) - Arrowhead Pride
So says the Chiefs GM.
San Diego Chargers
San Diego Chargers release current renderings of possible downtown stadium - Bolts From The Blue
The San Diego Chargers have put out some renderings of their vision for the proposed downtown stadium ahead of the citizens initiative kickoff on Saturday.
Chargers Exercise Fifth-Year Option on D.J. Fluker - Bolts From The Blue
The Chargers announced Friday that they have exercised their fifth-year option on D.J. Fluker.
How well has John Elway drafted in his first five years? - Mile High Report
With the 2016 NFL Draft coming up later this week, there has been much discussion around past draft classes. The Washington Post even ranked each teams drafting success over the last 20 years, which the Broncos came in a paltry 22nd on their list.
Brent Ostrichizer contracts, real & imaginary - Mile High Report
We Broncos fans will never forget Brent, or else we will. He might have become the 2nd or 3rd best franchise QB the Broncos ever had (we HAD Elway and Peyton, and they were awesome in their time), but it's more likely he wouldn't have.
Other Stories from around the NFL
In Johnny Manziel, Failure as Entertainment - The New York Times
At 23, the quarterback Johnny Manziel may never play pro football again. His downfall speaks to the propensity of fans — and the league — to treat young N.F.L. prospects like livestock.
NFL Draft 2016: Detailing ESPN and NFL Network’s coverage plans
In this week’s Media Circus, Richard Deitsch offers a television guide for the 2016 NFL draft (which begins Thursday night), detailing ESPN’s and NFL Network’s coverage plans.