Fearless NFL Predictions: AFC South

Alex OlsonContributor IAugust 4, 2009

INDIANAPOLIS - DECEMBER 28:  Reggie Wayne #99 of the Indianapolis Colts greets teammates as he is introduced before the game against the Tennessee Titans on December 28, 2008 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by: Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

A team-by-team analysis of the AFC South in the order I believe they will finish, look for other divisions soon!



Big-time turnover on the coaching staff will hurt but having Peyton Manning full-strength through the preseason will be huge.

They added Donald Brown, the most complete back and maybe the most NFL-ready back in the draft, to complement or possibly replace Joseph Addai, who struggled mightily last season.

No more Marvin Harrison but they still have Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark. Anthony Gonzalez was a good third receiver last year but really did not get a firm hold on Harrison's vacant spot.

Suprisingly, only 6 teams in the league gave up fewer points last year than the Colts, pair that with one of the best offenses in the NFL and you have a real contender.



Matt Schaub put up good numbers through just 11 games last year. If he and Andre Johnson can keep themselves on the field for the majority of the season they will be dynamic.

Kevin Walter broke out as an excellent complement to Andre Johnson and Owen Daniels has emerged as one of the better receiving tight ends in the league. Steve Slaton had a great rookie but his size portends a timeshare with a bigger back.

The defense was not good by any standard in 2008, but they have enough young talent to turn it around fairly quickly.




The Jags did not live up to their expectations last season, due in most part to injuries along to offensive line. They took great measures to relieve that problem by bringing in OT William Thomas from Philadelphia for an immediate upgrade and drafted linemen with their first 2 draft picks for the future.

Fred Taylor is gone but don't think that leaves the running game completely in Maurice Jones-Drew's hands, fullback Greg Jones rushed for 575 yards in 14 games as a rookie and should help shoulder some of the load left by Taylor. Veteran WR Torry Holt comes in as Jacksonville continues their search for a dependable #1 receiver.

In the end the Jaguars are outlcassed in their division and conference, Jack Del Rio could be a defensive coordinator somewhere else in 2010.



The Titans capitalized on the Colts and Jaguars struggles to win the division; both will be better this year. Kerry Collins proved late last year he is not a good enough QB to win games when he has to.

Albert Haynesworth leaves for big money in DC but the defense has played well without him in the past.

The bottom line is this team over-achieved last year and the talent in this division makes the odds repeating that outcome slim.