Winning the AFC South division will be a daunting task for the Colts this season. After winning the division nine times since 2002, the Colts have finished 8-8 the last two seasons, relinquishing the Crown to the Houston Texans. Seemingly overnight, the AFC South has gone from one of the worst to the one of the best divisions in football.
The Texans are coming off of back to back division championships and playoff berths, and are a quarterback away from being a legitimate contender. Their defense is one of the best in the NFL, and they have a decent amount of weapons. That being said, I’m not very confident in Tom Savage or Deshaun Watson in leading this team back to the postseason.
The Titans are the team that will take this crown away from the Colts. They may have the best running game in the NFL, with DeMarco Murray, Derrick Henry, and one of the best offensive lines in the league. Combine that with a very good young quarterback and a solid receiving corps, and you have the makings of a top five offense in the league. Their defense is nothing special, but with an offense like that, you can make the postseason.
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The Jaguars are a quarterback away from being arguably the best team in the division. Their defense is loaded with young talent, such as Jalen Ramsey and Myles Jack, and has elite veterans such as Calais Campbell. Leonard Fournette and a solid offensive line is scary for any defense. But in spite of all of this, the Jaguars will not win the division, let alone make the playoffs, until Blake Bortles is out the door.
And now we come to the elephant in the room, the Indianapolis Colts. This roster is the most talented that the Colts have had since Andrew Luck being drafted. That being said, Andrew Luck’s impact this year is still up in the air. There is no clear answer to whether he will play 16 games this season, which is something he has not been able to do for the last two years. The Colts are helped by their weak schedule, including opponents such as the Browns, 49ers, and Rams.
The biggest question for the Colts so far is their defense, which although much improved, is unproven. Despite the embarrassing loss to Detroit, the defense played quite well. This unit, scraped together by Chris Ballard, still has the stench of Ryan Grigson. Taking some pressure off of the offense will be necessary for success.
Now what do I think? Well, that is irrelevant. My prediction of an 11-5 bounce back season for the Colts and a playoff berth means nothing to anyone in the Colts’ organization.
But that being said, the Colts will win the division, and there is no doubt in my mind that says otherwise.