AFC West Weekly: Top three training camp storylines for each team

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We’re back with another update for Kansas City Chiefs fans on AFC West rivals.

With all NFL teams reporting to training camp by the end of July, we’ll take a look at the top camp storylines for the Kansas City Chiefs, Denver Broncos, Las Vegas Raiders and Los Angeles Chargers.

Kansas City Chiefs

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Training camp location: Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph, Mo.
Rookies report: July 22
Veterans report: July 26

  1. Will left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. show up to training camp? The Chiefs and Brown did not reach an agreement on a long-term extension, which leaves Brown playing on the franchise tag in 2022. Brown could hold out, but it seems more likely he’ll show up and play like normal in order to improve his price tag in 2023.

  2. How will the offense shape up? The Chiefs’ top four receivers and No. 1 running back are set, but who will fill the rest of those skill position spots with such strong competition? Also, the right tackle spot is up for grabs, especially with Lucas Niang starting camp on the PUP list. Will that spot go to the veteran Andrew Wylie or the rookie Darian Kinnard?

  3. Which other Chiefs rookies will step up? Expectations are high for the team’s two first-round picks in edge rusher George Karlaftis and cornerback Trent McDuffie. The hype is real for the rest of the 2022 draft class as well — how will Kansas City’s youth movement pan out?

Denver Broncos

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Training camp location: UCHealth Training Center in Englewood, Colo.
Rookies report: July 26
Veterans report: July 26

  1. How will quarterback Russell Wilson settle in with his new team after being traded by the Seattle Seahawks during the offseason? Will Wilson develop a quick rapport with his receivers, or will there be growing pains?

  2. How will the offensive line shape up by the end of camp? The interior offensive line is up for grabs, with three or four players battling for the guard spots and two guys duking it out for center. Also, Billy Turner will win the right tackle spot, right?

  3. Will running back Javonte Williams separate himself from Melvin Gordon, or will the two truly form an even one-two punch? Both had the same amount of carries last season (203) and while Gordon proved to be more efficient in the touchdown category, Williams was more productive as a receiver. Can Williams break out further in his second year or will Gordon reclaim his spot as the team’s top back?

Las Vegas Raiders

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Training camp location: Intermountain Healthcare Performance Center in Henderson, Nev.
Rookies report: July 18
Veterans report: July 20

  1. How will quarterback Derek Carr improve with his newest weapon — receiver Davante Adams — at his disposal? Will Carr take a leap forward with the division’s best receiving duo? Or will any of that matter with big questions still looming about the competency of the team’s offensive line?

  2. Speaking of weapons, tight end Darren Waller needs a new contract. He said he’ll still play regardless, but will those contract negotiations eventually become a distraction? Will the Raiders be able to work out a new deal with him before the season begins?

  3. Who the heck will get the bulk of the load at running back? It was Josh Jacobs last year, but he had an underwhelming season compared to recent years. Will Kenyan Drake take more carries, or can rookie Zamir White step up and take that role?

Los Angeles Chargers

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Training camp location: Jack Hammett Sports Complex in Costa Mesa, Calif.
Rookies report: July 19
Veterans report: July 26

  1. Much like the Chiefs’ situation, the Chargers have a big battle for the right tackle spot. Will it be Storm Norton or Trey Pipkins? Will either of them end up being a strength or a liability on the offensive line?

  2. The Chargers seem to have a good problem with too many good running backs. The question is how the the RB depth chart will shake out. With Austin Ekeler, Joshua Kelley, Larry Rountree and rookie Isaiah Spiller competing, who earns the coaches’ favor?

  3. Is edge rusher Khalil Mack ready to dominate again, or has age caught up with him? Coming off a foot injury in 2021, some may wonder whether the 31-year-old is on a downslide. However, he had six sacks in seven games last year before his injury, so on paper there seems to be plenty of juice left for the 2016 NFL Defensive Player of the Year.

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