We're hearing the following whispers from our sources around the AFC West:
• Some wondered if P Shane Lechler would be sent packing after he publicly bashed the Raiders for not picking up the option on head coach Tom Cable's contract. Oakland signed P Glenn Pakulak after Lechler sounded off, but word is the signing was not a signal that Oakland was ready to part ways with Lechler, who is arguably the best punter in the league.
• While Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles finished with the second-best all-time yardage per carry this season at 6.38, he came within an eyelash of breaking Jim Brown's mark of 6.4 set in 1963. In his final carry of Week 17 with the game basically out of reach, Charles lost one yard. Had he not registered that attempt, Charles would have ended the 2010 campaign with 6.41-yard average, eclipsing Brown's record.
• With their special teams finishing 2010 as one of the worst groups ever, the Chargers had little choice but to part ways with special-teams coach Steve Crosby. San Diego allowed three kickoff returns for TDs, had four punts blocked and gave up 18.9 yards per punt return. Although Crosby had been on staff since 2002 and was a favorite of head coach Norv Turner's, somebody had to take the fall for the unit failing in nearly all areas. Improving the special teams will be a key for the Bolts this offseason.
• While interim head coach Eric Studesville is not expected to retain the Broncos' head-coaching position, we hear there is a very good chance he will have a role with the team moving forward. The coach has been highly praised at all levels of the organization since taking over for Josh McDaniels with four weeks remaining in the season, and he has been said to carry a lot of class. With the future of all Broncos assistant coaches in jeopardy until a new head coach is hired, a source close to the team said Studesville has the best shot at being retained.