The AFC South division may be wide open once the season begins, but the Indianapolis Colts appear to be the favorites.
According to Sportsline, the Colts are listed as the favorites to win the division over the Titans, Texans, and Jaguars.
It’s a heckuva statement given the Texans won the division and the Titans made the AFC Championship Game last season.
The Colts (+140) are the favorites to win the AFC South @WilliamHillUS
But who is the best bet to win the division? 👇 pic.twitter.com/FqFRrOR24z
— SportsLine (@SportsLine) April 11, 2020
The Colts finished 7-9 last season, but a new quarterback, a promising front seven, and the best offensive line in football have made the Colts a playoff contender again.
The upcoming draft should allow the team to retool the roster, but the direction appears to trend up.
We should still expect the division to be a tight race.
The Titans were just one game away from making the Super Bowl and return the majority of their roster.
Ryan Tannehill will get a full season to prove his worth and Derrick Henry returns as the league’s rushing champion.
As for the Texans, the team has been highly scrutinized.
The Jaguars should be in the bottom tier after trading away Calais Campbell and Nick Foles.
Yannick Ngakoue is also expected to be traded and he is the last member of the once prestigious 2017 defense.
The Colts have a real chance to take control of the division once the season starts.
Which team will DOMINATE the AFC South this season? 🔥 pic.twitter.com/YykBgT6Vms
— Sunday Night Football (@SNFonNBC) April 14, 2020
The Major Moves
Even at the age of 38, the Colts believe that Philip Rivers can lead the team better than Jacoby Brissett.
Last year, Rivers threw 20 interceptions, which was third-most in the league.
However, the Chargers had one of the worst offensive lines in the league.
He should bounce back after receiving a little more protection.
Bringing back Anthony Costanzo is one of those reasons to feel the optimism.
-Chiefs: Needed 15 total starts from backup offensive linemen.
-49ers: Needed 18 total starts from backup offensive linemen.
-Colts: Needed 0 starts from reserve offensive linemen.
Yep, OL depth is needed in 2020:https://t.co/GHWlYYuRkN
— Kevin Bowen (@KBowen1070) April 10, 2020
If both pieces live up to their potential, the Colts could have a middle-tier defense blossom to a top-10 defense.
The Colts are not just looking at the Division.
They are looking at the whole piece of the pie.
When looking at the Colts’ schedule, it seems favorable.
If the Colts split with the Texan and Titans, but sweep the Jaguars, that puts their divisional record at 4-2.
At home, the Colts can beat the Jets and the Bengals but might struggle against the Packers, Vikings, and Ravens.
That puts their record at 6-5, so of course, the team needs to take care of their teams on the road.
The Colts play the Lions, Browns, Raiders, Steelers, and Bears on the road.
All of those games are winnable.
Can the Colts do it?