AFC West Stock Watch


1. The Raiders' draft future: The Raiders are set to give up a 2012 first-round pick and a conditional first-round pick in 2013 to Cincinnati for Carson Palmer. The Raiders' highest draft pick in 2012 will be a fifth-round pick. They have a sixth-round pick, but not a seventh-round pick. The Raiders are likely set to get a couple of compensatory picks (it starts at the end of the third round) for lost free agents. Still, the Raiders are clearly set up to win now.

2. Jason Campbell’s job security: Campbell's broken collarbone Sunday prompted the Palmer deal. The injury was a major blow to Campbell, who was finding success in his second season in Oakland. He is a free agent after the season. I could have seen the Raiders extending his contract at some point. Now, the 29-year-old’s future is very likely over in Oakland with the Raiders set to trade for Palmer. Campbell is going from the Raiders' sure starter to career limbo.

3. Kyle Orton’s future: Now that he has been replaced by Tim Tebow as Denver’s starting quarterback, it may be difficult for Orton to get another starting gig. He is a free agent at the end of the year, but will he be sought after as a starter?


1. The Raiders’ discipline: The Raiders were penalized just five times for 35 yards in their 24-17 win over Cleveland in Week 6. The Raiders have long been the most penalized team in the NFL. Oakland coach Hue Jackson has worked diligently on the issues. It may finally be paying off.

2. Oakland’s defense: Oakland’s defense has made strides in the past two weeks. It was effective against the Browns. If the Raiders can continue to limit the big play, the defense should help the team win games.

3. TebowMania: It’s just starting. Now that Tebow is going to be given the chance to prove he can be the Broncos’ starting quarterback of the future, we’ll be hearing even more about the kid who has been known as the most popular backup in sports.