8 Divisions 8 Days: AFC South Preview

The rulers of the AFC South should be these guys, if all goes as planned.
Photo Courtesy: Josh Hallett

By Matthew Behrndt

The AFC South is a division that most people would agree has one favorite to win it all. Last year’s champion, the Indianapolis Colts, are looking to defend their title against teams that really aren’t there in terms of talent.

The Jaguars are in rebuilding mode and they are hoping that they see a big step forward from Blake Bortles. The Titans are also trying to figure out what their team is going to look like with new quarterback Marcus Mariota at the helm.

The only team that really has a chance at maybe upsetting the Colts, is the Houston Texans. That being said, it’s still a long shot that the Texans can even compete with the Colts, they just don’t have the talent.

Jacksonville Jaguars: Record (2-12)
The Jaguars are a team that really isn’t there yet in terms of talent. Blake Bortles did not look very good last year and the only way the Jaguars are going to get better is if Bortles gets better. The Jaguars just don’t have many weapons on offense. T.J. Yeldon at running back as a rookie will struggle with a faster paced game and the receiving core, even though they added Julius Thomas, is not enough. Not to mention the defense is is not very good at all with a bad secondary that will be torched by offenses this year.

Tennessee Titans: Record (4-12)
The reason the Titans have a better record is because they seem to have more weapons on offense. Even though they have a rookie at quarterback, the offensive line is a little better and should keep him off his back. The defense is also a little better. They acquired Brian Orakpo to help bring pressure on the outside, also the secondary wasn’t terrible last year. The Titans are going to struggle this year, but they’ll do better than the Titans.

Houston Texans: Record (6-10)
While its fun being on Hard Knocks and seeing the inside of a NFL team. You don’t really see the elite teams wanting to be a part of the show. While that doesn’t mean that they are going to be terrible, it’s just most good teams don’t want to have any camera crews around them before the start of the season. The defense with J.J. Watt leading this group will be solid. They have a very good secondary and the pass rush ability from Watt and a healthy Clowney as well as a new acquisition of Vince Wilfork will make the defense very solid. The reason they will struggle is because of their quarterback situation. Neither Ryan Mallet or Brain Hoyer will be able to get the job done and in turn the offense won’t be able to produce. The weapons available for either quarterback just aren’t enough to make this team a contender in the division.

Indianapolis Colts: Record (13-3)
The Colts are very good. The offense is one of the best in the league, if not the best in the league. Andrew Luck is a top quarterback in the league and with new running back Frank Gore some pressure is being taken off him. However, with the new acquired weapons that he has at receiver, Andrew Luck might have the best statistical year ever. The only question on offense is, can the the o-line protect Andrew Luck? If the answer is yes, then the Colts will have an easy time scoring. The only downfall for the Colts is an average defense. While the defense isn’t the worst, any good offense is going to be able to score on this defense with ease. The Colts will have an easy time winning this division but the defense needs to get better in order to win a Super Bowl.