NFL Betting: Chargers Will Return To The Top Of AFC West In 2011-12

NFL OddsFor years the San Diego Chargers got by on mediocrity, taking advantage of a relatively easy path through the AFC West to consistently reach the postseason. That all changed a year ago, as the Oakland Raiders returned to respectability and the Kansas City Chiefs broke out under head coach Todd Haley to capture the division title. The Chargers will need to raise their game this season to avoid another letdown, and with the Denver Broncos rebuilding once again, San Diego has all of the sports betting tools to run away with what has become a three-team division.

The Chargers’ strength is their offense, which is led by one of the top quarterbacks in the game in Phillip Rivers. Rivers has grown in the offense to the sports betting bonus point where he is on the verge of being classified as elite, and if he can reignite that chemistry between himself and wide receiver Vincent Jackson, this offense will be among the most dangerous in the league once again. Running back Ryan Matthews should be more comfortable in his second year in the league, and big things are expected of the player that San Diego drafted to be their workhorse back. The Chargers’ defense actually exceeded expectations a year ago by allowing the fewest total yards, but that wasn’t really that big of a surprise with the Broncos, Chiefs, and Raiders owning some of the worst offenses in the league. The focus in San Diego will once again be on stopping the run, and the additions of first round pick Cory Liuget and linebacker Takeo Spikes are crucial.

Most of the talk this preseason has been about the Chiefs’ ability to repeat as division champions and the Raiders’ chances of taking another step forward and clinching an AFC West title, but there are reasons to bet against both. In Kansas City, the offense won’t surprise anyone this season and a much tougher schedule will make things harder for a team that capitalized on a weak path to the postseason a year ago. In Oakland, a new head coach following the lockout year will mean a more difficult transition period, and the losses of both Nnamdi Asomugha and Robert Gallery have not been accounted for. The Raiders will also have a tougher schedule this NFL betting lines season, so it is difficult to think that they will continue to progress.

The Broncos meanwhile will continue to rebuild with a potential public relations disaster brewing in the quarterback battle between Tim Tebow and Kyle Orton. Orton has put up the better numbers and has more betonline experience, but Tebow is the future and a fan favorite that could make supporters relentless if the team starts losing. Ultimately, Denver is rebuilding and both the Chiefs and Raiders will face tough tasks elevating their level of play with a tougher schedule. That leaves the Chargers to become the class of the division, as they return to the top of the AFC West.

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