Last season the Houston Texans snuck into the top spot of the AFC South after injuries derailed the Indianapolis Colts, who had a down season. Things look to be changing quite a bit in the division, with the Jacksonville Jaguars looking to make a jump in the division, and the Titans also looking to improve.
Here’s our preview of the division and if we think the Texans are going to be able to repeat at division champions.
1. Indianapolis Colts (11-5)
I see a big bounce back season for Andrew Luck and the Colts coming, and think they could actually find their way to the AFC Title game should they stay somewhat healthy. Now if this squad has a season like last year and lose players like franchise QB Luck, then all bets are off. Until then, they have the most talent of any team in the division, and I think they are going to overtake the division once again.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars (9-7)
Since becoming coach, Gus Bradley has slowly been building this team up, and I think 2016 is finally the season the Jaguars start to roar again in the South. They have a solid QB in Blake Bortles, two good RB’s, and two solid WR’s. The defense still needs to play better, but Bradley has started to put his stamp on that side of the field as well like he did in Seattle. Look for some growing pains, but for a team that will start to turn the corner.
3. Houston Texans (7-9)
Brock Osweiler is the franchise QB that the Texans have looked for since Matt Schaub, but at the end of the day there’s still plenty of question marks about him as a player. Can he make players around him better? I see a year of some big ups and downs for this team, and in the end, I think they are still at best a .500 team. Look for new RB Lamar Miller to have a big impact, but the injury to J.J. Watt could last into the season for a defense that seemed to wear down. They won’t be taking home another AFC South title in 2016.
4. Tennessee Titans (4-12)
I see this being one of the better 4-12 teams in the league, if there is such a thing. The Titans will get better in Mike Mularkey’s system, and look for Marcus Mariotta to have a big 2016 as he’ll get to air it out and also use his legs as well. A lot of it starts and ends there, as this team is void of the big playmakers, especially at the wide out spot. The Titans will show signs of getting better, but there’s a long way to go in Tennessee.