The AFC South is a chaotic division year after year, with each team having its own hot streak. This past year, we’ve seen two superstars depart the division in DeAndre Hopkins and Jalen Ramsey, both adding to the mystery of who will win the division next. Each team has its own question that they must answer, in order to find success. Overall, this division is unpredictable year to year, and with the 2020 schedule set, there will be some interesting games to watch. With that said, this is an eight-part series where our Scorecrow NFL analysts do an early prediction of the wins and losses of each team. We projected all 256 games and have the winners and losers of each division!
Make sure to check out the rest of our record projections here.
Winner of the AFC South
Brady: Indianapolis Colts (9-7) | Team MVP: Jonathan Taylor
The Colts have one of the best offensive lines in the NFL and can dominate the ground game. Additionally, with the signing of veteran Philip Rivers, the team gains a capable game manager who can be productive with a good supporting cast. Taylor is the perfect running back for this system. He is built like a truck with excellent contact balance and great long speed, both of which will help him score multiple 20 plus yard touchdowns. Overall, I believe they can go deep into the playoffs with the strengths of this team.
Byron: Indianapolis Colts (11-5) | Team MVP: Darius Leonard
After a long season last year, that was limited with poor quarterback play and injuries, the Colts will flip their fortunes and go 11-5 in the 2020 season, and will get back to the playoffs. The addition of Rivers, Trey Burton, Michael Pittman Jr., and Taylor is totally going to transform that boring Colts offense into something fun. Trading for DeForest Buckner will also go a long way on defense and will take the pressure off of Leonard and lets him roam around the field and make plays as he’s hitting his prime.
Mason: Tennessee Titans (10-6) | Team MVP: Derrick Henry
The AFC South is changing rapidly by the minute but I think Tennessee lost the least while also gaining some valuable pieces. Ryan Tannehill will have to prove himself again, but Tennessee has added pieces and evolves the offense around him. The defense is still great and the offensive line lost a piece but replaced him in the first round.
Loser of the AFC South
Brady: Jacksonville Jaguars( 3-13) | Team MVP: Gardner Minshew
The Jaguars lack talent in almost every position, and the team will likely miss veteran players such as Calais Campbell and A.J. Bouye. The team’s offense has significant holes in the wide receiver, offensive tackle, and tight end positions, which ultimately will make Minshew carry the team. While Minshew could be successful in this league, the Jaguars do not have the weapons or protection to help him win games. This year should be dedicated to determining if Minshew has the potential to be the future starter. However, I don’t believe Minshew will be given a fair shot as a starter. So the team will likely look at Trevor Lawrence for the 2021 draft.
Byron: Jacksonville Jaguars (3-13) | Team MVP: Gardner Minshew
With Nick Foles in Chicago now, this is Minshew’s team. The second-year quarterback will have to score a lot of points on offense because the defense was completely redone over the past couple of years. 10 out of 11 starters on the defense from their 2018 AFC championship run are now gone. They selected a considerable number of defensive players in the 2020 draft to help rebuild that side of the ball. Minshew has some weapons with DJ Chark, Dede Westbrook, Laviska Shenault Jr., Chris Conley, and others. Ultimately though, the team will struggle all year with youth and talent and will eventually end up with a top-five pick in next year’s draft.
Mason: Jacksonville Jaguars (3-13) | Team MVP: Leonard Fournette
The Jaguars, like the Dolphins, are going under a full rebuild, although they might not say so. Jacksonville plays in a tough division and plays the AFC and NFC North this year while having Fournette and Yannick Ngakoue halfway out the door. Fournette should put the team on his back, but everyone knows what the team wants to do and teams will stop it. They might as well tank the season and try and get whatever capital they can for Fournette and Ngakoue.
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