Chiefs favored to win seventh consecutive AFC West title in 2022

The Kansas City Chiefs are favored to make AFC West history once again during the 2022 NFL season.

Kansas City continued its historic streak of success within the AFC West division last season, winning its sixth consecutive AFC West title, becoming the only team in division history to ever win the division six times in a row. Prior to the 2017 season, the Chiefs had never once won the division in consecutive seasons, but Andy Reid ushered in an unprecedented era of success.

For the upcoming season, Kansas City is favored to take home the AFC West title once again. If they were to do this, they’d extend their record of dominance over the division.

Here’s a look at the latest betting odds on AFC West division winners from Tipico:

Team Odds
Kansas City Chiefs +155
Los Angeles Chargers +240
Denver Broncos +260
Las Vegas Raiders +600

Even though the offseason narrative has been that AFC West teams have closed the gap, oddsmakers are hesitant to give anyone the edge over Kansas City. This time last season, the Broncos were a distant second behind the Chiefs. This time, it’s Los Angeles that is closest in odds to K.C., but Denver is a close third. While Las Vegas is a distant fourth, they’ve seemingly improved their odds from last season as well (+1600).

Unfortunately, these odds won’t stop national media from picking the Chargers to win the AFC West during the course of the offseason. While these odds remain ever-changing, it’s important to remember that the Chiefs are one of just four NFL teams to have a winning all-time record against every team in their division. A lot of that success comes under the tutelage of Andy Reid, and it won’t be going away overnight.

For more betting information on the rest of the NFL and college football, please check out our sister site, Sportsbook Wire.

2022 NFL Draft: Three players KC Chiefs shouldn’t have passed on

The Kansas City Chiefs had a stellar 2022 NFL Draft, but what players might they regret passing over?

Read this knowing that the Kansas City Chiefs had one of the NFL’s best overall drafts. The team addressed several needs top to bottom, utilizing trades up and down to get players. Kansas City selected players who will contribute in Week 1, such as defensive end George Karlaftis, and long-term investments, such as cornerback Joshua Williams. This draft could replenish a Chiefs roster desperate for some young, cheap talent.

General manager Brett Veach and the Chiefs front office should be happy with their selections. But, there are some selections worth questioning. Now, there are reasons the Chiefs may not have drafted a player or vice versa.

Teams can be bearish or bullish on prospects, with interviews, medical history, and other evaluations being important in the pre-draft process. By and large, fans do not get this insight into the team-specific evaluations. While more post-draft transparency would be very interesting, teams are very cagey about their specific draft style and criteria.

If the Chiefs feel good about who they drafted, that is all that matters. But, from this perspective, there are better approaches the Chiefs could have taken in the draft. What prospects might the Chiefs regret passing on?

CB Martin Emerson

Selected by Cleveland Browns at 68th overall

Veach broke a draft mold by selecting cornerback Trent McDuffie at 21st overall. That is the highest pick the Cheifs have used on a cornerback since Marcus Peters in 2015, despite the position being a perennial need. If Veach would have selected cornerback Martin Emerson at 62nd overall, Chiefs social media would have broken.

Emerson has several physical traits the Chiefs look for in their outside corners. Standing at 6’1″ and weighing in at 201 lbs., Emerson is built to battle against bigger NFL wide receivers. He has very long arms, measuring at 33 1/2″ each. Both his weight and length help jam smaller receivers at the line of scrimmage, influencing the play from the snap.

Emerson does not have top-end speed, evident by his 4.51 40-yard dash at the 2022 NFL Combine. He still earned a 8.50 Relative Athletic Score, with good marks in his agility drills. Emerson does not have ideal speed, but slower cornerbacks, such as Richard Sherman, have seen elite success recently.

Emerson was commonly linked to Kansas City, as he would be available outside the top-50 picks and had the physical tools the team covets. He is not a sure-fire prospect, but the Chiefs lament passing on him if he can develop into a top starter for the Cleveland Browns.

WR Kevin Austin Jr.

Undrafted free agent, signed by Jacksonville Jaguars

There were plenty of interesting undrafted free agents, and Kansas City arguably got the best available in wide receiver Justyn Ross. But, the Chiefs could have addressed wide receiver late in the seventh round by drafting Kevin Austin, Jr.

A Notre Dame product, Austin is the epitome of a mid-ceiling, low-floor prospect. He only has 54 catches in his collegiate career. He missed the 2019 season by violating team rules, then lost much of 2020 with a foot injury. Austin’s 2021 season performance caught scouts’ eyes, as he totaled 888 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns.

Austin improved as the season went along, both by the numbers and by his fundamentals. His frame—6’2″, 200 lbs.—fits well in the NFL, and he seemed to have only scratched the surface of his potential. NFL analyst Lance Zierlein projected him as high as Round 3 of the 2022 NFL Draft, so Austin going undrafted was surprising.

There may be injury or character concerns fans are unaware of that raised red flags with teams. However, if there was not, Kansas City could have added another tantalizing receiving prospect to the mix. The Chiefs selecting safety Nazeeh Johnson was met with a lukewarm response. Austin was available there at 259th overall. If he develops into any semblance of a contributor, teams will be frustrated they missed out.

OT Bernhard Raimann

Selected by Indianapolis Colts at 77th overall

The 2022 NFL Draft had few exciting offensive tackle prospects, but Bernhard Raimann’s draft board tumble could have been to Kansas City’s gain.

Raimann has an interesting story, as an Austrian who had to grayshirt (delayed scholarship) his first collegiate season for his country’s mandatory military service. He is also a former tight end who transitioned to left tackle very quickly. He moves fluidly, especially considering his frame at 6’6″, 307 lbs. Raimann possesses some of this draft class’ best footwork, thanks to his natural athleticism.

Raimann’s film and collegiate performance are good, but they’re exceptional in context considering his limited time playing the position. His progression is rocketing the right way, which is why Indianapolis invested the 77th overall selection in him. With a good coaching staff, Raimann could realize his full potential at left tackle.

While Raimann is amongst the draft’s oldest prospects, Kansas City should have talked about selecting him. Left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. is still not signed long-term, and right tackle Lucas Niang is frequently injured. While the Chiefs did add mauler Darian Kinnard, Raimann is a potential franchise tackle. Those players do not come around often, especially with how late the Chiefs pick,

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