AFC West mailbag

Mid-week mailbag:

Jay Pennington from San Francisco wants to know if I think Wade Phillips could resurface as the Chargers’ defensive coordinator if he is fired as the Cowboy’s coach.

Bill Williamson: I think the only way it could happen is if current defensive coordinator Ron Rivera gets a job as a head coach. Rivera will not be replaced. He is doing a nice job. Rivera could be a serious candidate to get a head coaching-gig. He’s been a finalist before and I’d expect him to get some looks around the league. If Rivera goes elsewhere and Phillips is available, perhaps a reunion could occur. Phillips is beloved by many in the San Diego organization.

Tony from Sacramento wants to know

if the Raiders are upset that Washington quarterback Jake Locker is planning to return to school next year.

BW: I don’t know if it ruined Oakland’s week or anything, but it does take a quality player off the board at a position Oakland may look at. But there is still Jimmy Clausen and Sam Bradford for Oakland to consider. Still, it is no sure thing the Raiders will take a quarterback early in next year’s draft. Oakland has other needs, so quarterback could wait another year in the draft.

Jared from JC, Oregon wants to know

if any of the five Heisman Trophy finalists will fit in the AFC West.

BW: Jared, it’s an interesting question with many possibilities. So, I’m going to make one connection. I think Stanford running back Toby Gerhart could be a good fit in both Kansas City and in San Diego. Both teams could be looking for running backs and Gerhart could be a good value pick in the second or third round. He is a big, rugged back and could fit both team’s systems. I would not be surprised if the Heisman runner-up landed in this division.