The Houston Texans were expected to run away with the AFC South last season. They did beat the odds to win the AFC South, but they didn’t win the division comfortably, and they definitely have some company now to challenge for the division’s automatic bid into the playoffs. The AFC South odds are a case of the haves and the have nots this year though, and we’re here to break it all down at Bankroll Sports!
There’s no doubt that the Houston Texans (AFC South Odds: 1 to 2.50 SportBet Sportsbook) remain as one of the top teams in the AFC this year, and this might be the season that the team gets over the hump. Anything less than a trip to the Super Bowl would be considered a disappointment for a team that has made it to the postseason and won a playoff game in each of the last two seasons. The offense should be a heck of a lot better now that there is a legitimate second receiver flanking WR Andre Johnson in WR DeAndre Hopkins, who has a great chance of being the Offensive Rookie of the Year this season. The defense will get back LB Brian Cushing once again this year, and that should help out, though the loss of LB Connor Barwin will definitely hurt the defense off the edge. S Ed Reed brings a swagger to the team that it just hasn’t had on the defensive side of the ball in franchise history, and if he can get this team believing that it should win games, it will be a very, very dangerous squad. Still, the team is only going to go as far as QB Matt Schaub and RB Arian Foster take it, and last year, that was only good enough to get into the second round of the playoffs.
Last season, the Indianapolis Colts (Odds To Win AFC South: 2.50 to 1 SportBet Sportsbook) stormed out of nowhere to win 11 games and get into the playoffs. We know that QB Andrew Luck is probably going to be the best quarterback of his generation, and the opportunity is there for him to throw for 5,000 yards, believe it or not. The whole offense was sort of rebuilt through the NFL Draft last year, and as a result, there isn’t much that this team has had to do much but build its core. Head Coach Chuck Pagano will hopefully remain healthy and get a chance to lead his team into battle for all 16 games and the postseason this year. The problem that Indianapolis has though, is that it probably isn’t quite as good as Houston is quite yet. Give it one more year though, and the men in white and blue should be back in command. Perhaps the Colts will arrive a year ahead of schedule, but we think they are destined for a slight drop from last season’s 11 wins.
Those were the haves. Now we’re at the have nots. The Tennessee Titans (2013 AFC South Betting Lines: 7.50 to 1 @ SportBet Sportsbook) just don’t feel like a team that is all that close to doing anything remarkable. The club was definitively no better than the 6-10 mark that it put up last season, as it was outscored by 141 points and went just 2-6 on the road. QB Jake Locker just isn’t a refined passer, though at least this year, he has a lot of weapons to choose from, starting of course with WR Kenny Britt. Can the Titans stop anyone, though? They ranked dead last in the NFL last year in defense at 29.4 points per game allowed, and there were some tremendously ugly games that won’t leave the memory bank any time in the near future. RB Chris Johnson would have to run for 2,000+ yards again just to even remotely get the Titans to a discussion to get to .500.
For as bad as the Titans are, the Jacksonville Jaguars (NFL AFC South Division Odds: 25 to 1 SportBet Sportsbook) are nowhere near winning. We do give the club some credit, knowing that it made some good moves in the offseason. The team didn’t panic to make a move for a mediocre quarterback, and it passed on all of these quarterbacks in the NFL Draft as well. The addition of OT Luke Joeckel might have been the best pick in the NFL Draft, as he can be a franchise cornerstone. That could help put together the rushing attack again for RB Maurice Jones-Drew, who does seem like he is running out of tread on his tires. WR Justin Blackmon has been suspended for the first four games of the season after failing a drug test, and he might be on his way out of the league if he can’t shape up. It’s a shame too, because drafting him gave the team a consistent weapon on the outside that could have been one of the more explosive players in the league. It will be another frustrating year for the Jaguars, but another Top 5 pick in the NFL Draft might get this team to where it really needs to be going forward in 2014.
Indianapolis Colts Win AFC South +250
Field Wins AFC South -300
Tennessee Titans Win AFC South +750
Field Wins AFC South -950
Jacksonville Jaguars Win AFC South +2500
Field Wins AFC South -4000
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