Once looking like one of the best divisions in football, the AFC South is filled with questions. However, the 2020 season is an opportunity for a lot of players to prove themselves, and teams to prove they are ready to make a run.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars
A true contender for the top selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, Jacksonville has spent much of the last year trading away anything of value from their 2017 AFC Championship season. With quarterback Gardner Minshew and wide receiver DJ Chark as the only two bright spots left on the team, it’s easy to put them at the bottom of the division. Hopefully their trades and high upcoming draft picks help them get back on track.
Breakout Player – CB C.J. Henderson
3. Indianapolis Colts
When discussing the Pittsburgh Steelers (see above), I made a reference to other quarterbacks from the 2004 NFL Draft. It would be unfair to not point out how Philip Rivers belongs in that same category of declining talents. For Rivers, 38, it will be difficult for him to display an elite level of play during the 2020 season. The Colts are a team built around the quarterback position, and if Rivers doesn’t take a massive step forward from his last season, it’ll be hard to see them doing any better with him than Jacoby Brissett.
Breakout Player – LB Bobby Okereke
2. Houston Texans
The Texans are a team filled with potential, as they ultimately placed second in this ranking because of a couple of question marks yet to be answered. Quarterback Deshaun Watson has to prove that he can still be a top-tier signal caller without DeAndre Hopkins. With newly extended Laremy Tunsil now having a complete offseason, Houston should manage to find success. After multiple years of mismanagement from Bill O’Brien, the mistakes will need to be limited if there is any chance of making noise in the AFC.
Breakout Player – WR Will Fuller
1. Tennessee Titans
While Tennessee has plenty of questions, they will step up to the challenge. Similarly to their rivals in Houston, the offensive line is a concern for this team. Losing Jack Conklin hurts; particularly as a run-first team. However, last year they built a really strong foundation around the combination that is Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry. If they can repeat that success in 2020, it should be enough to take the division.
Breakout Player – DE Jeffrey Simmons