Around the AFC West: Are the Chargers shopping?

Posted by ESPN.com’s Bill Williamson


The Broncos backup running backs need to be ready.

My take: There is a strong chance starting running back Correll Buckhalter won’t play Sunday against New England with a high ankle sprain. Thus, rookie Knowshon Moreno would start. But it would also mean second-year player Peyton Hillis would likely get some carries. Hillis was productive as a rookie. Denver’s running success has transitioned from the old to the new regime. It will be interesting to see if Hillis can run the ball with success if Buckhalter is out.

Kansas City

Derrick Johnson quietlytries to regain his starting linebacker job.

My take: If the coaching staff doesn’t think Johnson is playing good enough to start, then he isn’t going to play. But looking at the points Kansas City has allowed this year, you would think there is room for this talented player on the field.


It is being reported that Michael Bush will get a chance to be the primary back with Darren McFadden hurt.

My take: This is, indeed, Bush’s chance. McFadden will be out for up to a month with a knee issue. The talented Bush could make a claim on the starting job if he performs well. Oakland is desperate for any offensive impact and Bush, who played well at the end of last season, has an opportunity to bring life to this downtrodden offense.

San Diego

The San Diego Chargers are considering adding help before the trade deadline.

My take: A.J. Smith is clearly not happy and he has been known to make moves before the deadline, which is Oct. 20 this year. San Diego has one more game before the deadline and that is the night before they play at home against Denver on "Monday Night Football." Smith may have to make his decision before seeing his team play again. I think San Diego is feeling the heat this year more than others because of all its early-season injuries.