AFC West mailbag

Weekend mail call:

Tyler from Hamilton, Ontario wants to know if St. Louis restricted free agent Oshiomogho Atogwe becomes available, could he end up in the AFC West.

Bill Williamson: San Diego, Kansas City and Oakland could all use the help at safety. Perhaps not to the extent of giving this player big dollars. If Atogwe does leave St. Louis, I think there may be several aggressive pursuers outside of the AFC West. In the end, I’d be surprised if Atogwe played in the AFC West this year.

Nick J. from Chico, Calif. wants to know why Josh McDaniels is considered such a good quarterback coach.

BW: Nick (great town, by the way), it sounds like you are not much of a believer in McDaniels’ skills as a quarterback coach. Sure, Tom Brady was established when McDaniels got him in New England, but he made strides with McDaniels as his coach. McDaniels deserves much credit for instantly making Matt Cassel an effective NFL quarterback when Brady was hurt in 2008. Plus, Kyle Orton had a nice season under McDaniels last year. You can question McDaniels for his personnel decision and whether he is ready to lead an entire team, but questioning his ability to coach quarterbacks is a losing proposition. The guy knows his way around a quarterback meeting room.

Ryan from Fort Collins, Colo. wants to know if there is any chance Orton is not on the Broncos’ roster at the start of this season.

BW: I don’t think so. I know there was a push by some Denver media members for the Broncos to move on from Orton. But I don’t see it happening. He has one season remaining on his contract. With Tim Tebow learning the system in Denver and Brady Quinn trying to salvage his career, the time is not right for Orton to be cut loose. The Broncos will need him in 2010 (at least to start the season). There is no need to deal him now.