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2021 AFC South Preview

Predicted Order of Finish

AFC South

1. Indianapolis- after Phillip Rivers announced his retirement at the end of last year the Colts went out and acquired QB Carson Wentz who just so happened to make the Pro bowl in 2017 under then coordinator for the Eagles Frank Reich, Reich who is known for developing quarterbacks will look to revitalize Wentz’s career after his production in Phily went south largely in part to poor protection from the O-Line and lack of talent around him, Wentz will have a much better line to work with and a strong running game led Jonathan Taylor who rushed for 1,169 yards in his rookie season, Michael Pittman Jr is ready to take over as the lead receiver for the aging T.Y. Hilton who signed a 1 year deal to return, the defense was stout against the run in 2020 finishing 2nd in rush yards allowed , but didn’t generate much pass rush, as a result the team went out and drafted a pair of defensive pass rushers in the first 2 rounds in Kwity Paye, and Dayo Odenyingbo, reuniting with Reich is just what Wentz needed to restart his career, if he stays healthy the Colts should fend off Tennessee for the South

2. Tennessee- after an 11-5 season that ended with a disappointing Wild Card loss at home the Titans come into 2021 with their sights set on a deep playoff run and possible trip to LA in February, the offense was explosive in 2020 as workhorse RB Derrick Henry eclipsed the 2,000 yard rush mark, QB Ryan Tannehill threw a career high 33 touchdowns 11 of them to star receiver A.J. Brown who had 1,075 yards on the year, the offense will be under new coordinator Todd Downing after Arthur Smith took the Falcons head coaching job, defensively the unit struggled finishing 24th in points allowed, defensive minded HC Mike Vrabel decided to hand over play calling duties to former linebackers coach Shane Bowen, the team made big moves in the offseason to alleviate some of its deficiencies in 2020, brought in was star linebacker Bud Dupree along with first round draft pick cornerback Caleb Farley, new coordinators on both sides of ball could take time to adjust, at 27 Henry has a lot of mileage

3. Jacksonville- the Urban Meyer era has arrived in Jacksonville, the ultra-successful college coach decided to pass on big time college suitors and give the NFL a shot, he will have the luxury of breaking in rookie QB and once in generation talent Trevor Lawrence, Lawrence will have a familiar face in the backfield in Clemson teammate Travis Etienne, the receiving corps is talented with offseason signee Marvin Jones Jr along with DJ Chark Jr who made the Pro-Bowl in 2019, the defense was awful in 2020 giving up 30.8 points good for second worst in the league, the team made a plethora of offseason moves signing defensive linemen Roy Robertson-Harris and Malcom Brown to improve up front along with cornerback Shaquill Griffin, the Jaguars are one of the NFL’s most intriguing teams heading into 2021, can Meyer buck the trend of successful college coaches failing at the professional ranks

4. Houston- if the Texans can as many headlines on the field in 2021 as they have off the field it should go down as a very successful season, QB Deshaun Watson who demanded to be traded after the season was then accused of sexual misconduct and assault by multiple woman and is now under ongoing investigation by the NFL, this all while the organization was breaking in new General Manager Nick Caserio and new Head Coach David Culley, with Watson’s days in Houston likely over Tyrod Taylor will begin the season as the starting QB, Culley worked with Taylor at Buffalo in 2017, the Texans drafted Davis Mills in the third round and could see action is Taylor struggles, Brandin Cooks will be the primary receiving target once again after hauling in 81 passes in 2020 for 1,150 yards, Lovie Smith will handle the coordinator duties on a defense that was porous last year and will now be without end J.J. Watt, a host of new faces were brought in by Caserio led by DT Maliek Collins in an effort to revamp the unit, with all the offseason distractions and new faces everywhere avoiding the AFC South basement would have to be considered a success


Sell- Tennessee

Best Bet- Tennessee UNDER total wins

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